Injured Marquette guard Dominic James stood watching the TV monitor near press row at Madison Square Garden, wearing a gray sweatsuit, a walking cast on his left foot and a look of concern.
Moments later, official Tim Higgins signaled the basket was good and Villanova had escaped with a 76-75 victory over Marquette in a memorable buzzer-beater in the Big East quarterfinals.
Villanova’s Dwayne Anderson’s back-door layup off a Reggie Redding pass as time expired gave the No. 4 seed Wildcats the win over refuse-to-die Marquette, which had overcome a 16-point second-half deficit.
Dante Cunningham blocked Jerel McNeal’s layup attempt with 21 seconds to play, setting up the final shot for Villanova, which will play No. 1 seed Louisville at 7 p.m. on Friday in the Big East semifinals. Anderson’s shot bounced around the rim a couple of times as the horn sounded, before dropping in for his only bucket of the game.
Marquette (24-9), which is 1-5 since James suffered a season-ending foot injury, awaits its seed in the NCAA Tournament.