MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Stefan Nastic carried that look of a difference-maker into Stanford's Sweet 16 appearance against Dayton.

Unfortunately for the Cardinal, he didn't have that same look while sitting on the bench at game's end.

Nastic was as foul-prone defensively as he was effective offensively Thursday, and the one offset the other in the 82-72 loss that eliminated the Cardinal from the NCAA tournament.

"He's really anchored our post," Stanford coach Johnny Dawkins said. "He's been great in there.

"The last month of the season, he's been shooting 80, 90 percent from the field. He's been so efficient, it's been unbelievable."

The 6-foot-11 junior seemingly scored nearly every time he touched the ball, finishing with 15 points. But the Cardinal was also denied one of its better weapons when he fouled out after just 20 minutes on the floor.

"When he came out, that was difficult for us," Dawkins said. "He was anchoring what we were doing, and it kind of disrupted our offense because he's someone we go to quite a bit. So then we have to find other ways to manufacture that, and to our credit, I thought we did. So it was disruptive, but we still tried to find a way to be competitive."


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The night started out well. Nastic began the game by knocking down the first two jump hooks he took, much as he had over an incredibly efficient six-game stretch going into this contest. He had made 22 of his 24 field-goal attempts since the Cardinal's final game of the regular season. By going 5 for 7 against the Flyers, he shot 84 percent from the field during the Pac-12 and NCAA tournaments.

"He's been critical," said Stanford forward Josh Huestis said. "He's probably the best post I've seen. He's somebody that every single person wants to have on his team.

"I credit him with our momentum in this tournament. It speaks to his maturity."

Nastic picked up his first two fouls in a single sequence. His third came about a minute before Dawkins picked up a technical. The Flyers pushed a 30-23 lead to 42-32 while Nastic missed the final seven minutes of the first half.

After falling behind 44-32 early in the second half, Stanford began again to find Nastic and fellow big man Dwight Powell, repeatedly going inside and cutting the lead to 49-45.

But that sequence was soon followed by a loose ball foul against Nastic, his fourth. He picked up his fifth with 5:04 remaining.

"I'm hustling for the ball," Nastic said. "I felt it could have gone both ways, but it went against me.

"It was being called both ways," Nastic said. "That's on me. You keep playing your game. Some calls are going to go your way. Some aren't."