Everything to know about the Sweet 16 games at TD Garden

College Sports

UConn will play San Diego State, and Illinois will play Iowa State Thursday. The winners will compete on Saturday for a spot in the Final Four.

UConn’s Cam Spencer shoots during a practice at TD Garden on Wednesday.

The stage is set for the East Regional, which tips off with two Sweet 16 games in Boston on Thursday.

No. 1 overall seed UConn is joined by No. 2 seed Iowa State, No. 3 seed Illinois, and No. 5 seed San Diego State.

UConn will play San Diego State, and Illinois will play Iowa State Thursday, and the winners will compete on Saturday for a spot in the Final Four.

Here’s everything you need to know about when the teams will play, how to get tickets, and how to watch if you can’t make it to TD Garden.

Sweet 16 in Boston schedule

Game 1: UConn vs. San Diego State, 7:39 p.m. EDT Thursday, TBS/TruTV

Game 2: Illinois vs. Iowa State, 10:09 p.m. EDT Thursday, TBS/TruTV

Regional final: Winner of Game 1 vs. winner of Game 2, TBD Saturday

Can you still get tickets to the Sweet 16 in Boston?

If you waited until now to get tickets, it’s not too late — but it will cost you.

The cheapest seat available on Ticketmaster as of Wednesday is listed for $479, and the priciest seat will run you $3,266.

But if you’re just trying to get into the Garden to see some of the action, consider waiting for Saturday’s game. The resale market should be flush with upward of 4,700 unwanted tickets from fans whose teams lost.

How to watch on television and streaming

Game 1 between San Diego State and UConn will tip off at 7:39 p.m. Illinois and Iowa State will tip off at 10:09 p.m.

Both games will be available on TBS and truTV.

Saturday’s Elite 8 matchup will be broadcast on TBS.

Fan info and watch parties

Local and out-of-town fans can take in the East Regional atmosphere even without going to the games by attending watch parties and fan gatherings in the area.

All of the pregame events and watch parties are within a block of TD Garden and of each other.

Meet the teams

Tristen Newton has UConn back in the Sweet 16.

No. 1 Connecticut

UConn, the top overall seed in this year’s bracket, didn’t sweat much in its first two games. After opening with a 91-52 thumping of No. 16 Stetson, the Huskies easily dispatched No. 9 Northwestern, 75-58, at one point holding a 30-point lead in the second half.

Three big men have anchored the Huskies: 6-foot-5-inch guard Tristen Newton, in his final season in Storrs, Conn.; 6-4 grad student guard Cam Spencer; and 7-2 center Donovan Clingan, a sophomore. The three combined for 45 points in Sunday’s win. Joining them in the starting rotation is Southborough’s Alex Karaban, a 6-8 forward who is averaging 13.7 points per game.

Coach Dan Hurley has the Huskies in prime position to become the first back-to-back champs since Florida in 2006-07. They’ve lost only three times this season: In December to Kansas and Seton Hall, and in February when fellow Sweet 16 team Creighton knocked them out of a No. 1 ranking with an upset in Nebraska.

The Huskies are averaging nearly 18 points a game more than their opponents — the fourth-best differential in Division 1.

“We are bulletproof,” Hurley said Sunday night. “Again, elite offense, elite defense.”

No. 5 San Diego State

The Aztecs survived a first-round scare from No. 12 Alabama-Birmingham and easily handled would-be Cinderella Yale, a 13 seed, on Sunday, 85-57. Their run through the first weekend sets up a rematch of last year’s national championship game.

Jaedon LeDee is the key to San Diego State’s offense. The senior forward is averaging 21.5 points per game — 10th-best in Division 1 — and totaled 58 points over the Aztecs’ first two games. What’s his secret?

“Just staying focused,” he said after Sunday’s game. “That’s really all it is. Just out there playing and executing the game plan and letting it flow to my teammates. That’s really all I’m doing out there.”

Coach Brian Dutcher has his team in its fourth straight NCAA Tournament and fifth in the seven seasons he’s been at the helm.

No. 3 Illinois

Third-seeded Illinois had a smooth ride into the Sweet 16, dispatching Morehead State with a 16-point win in the first round and blowing out 11th-seeded Duquesne to make it to Boston.

Success has been complicated for the Fighting Illini, who enter TD Garden on the back of Terrence Shannon Jr., the star senior guard who is still facing rape charges in Kansas. Shannon scored a combined 56 points across the two wins.

Coach Brad Underwood leads the Big Ten tournament champions into the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2005, which also was the last time Illinois won the conference tournament before Underwood arrived.

The Illini boast the ninth-best scoring offense in the country this season, and their path to the Final Four runs through their offense — and in particular Shannon.

No. 2 Iowa State

The Cyclones had a slightly trickier run to the East Regional, with seventh-seeded Washington State keeping things close for much of the Round of 32 matchup before Iowa State pulled away. The Big 12 tournament champions boast a more balanced scoring attack than their Sweet 16 opponent — no Cyclone scored more than 19 points in either of their wins thus far — and rely on one of the nation’s best defenses.

Under coach T.J. Otzelberger, Iowa State allowed just 61.2 points per game this season, fourth-best in the nation, setting up a classic matchup between an elite offense and an elite defense.

The Cyclones received a nice boost from Springfield Central grad Hason Ward, who has scored 17 points in 25 minutes across their two wins thus far.

Information from previous Globe stories was used in this report.

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