LIU Brooklyn and Wagner, the top two seeds in the Northeast Conference tournament, both won their quarterfinal games on Thursday night.
LIU saw a 15-point first-half lead dwindle to just one after intermission, but held off Sacred Heart, 80-68. Jamal Olasewere led five Blackbirds in double figures with 20 points.
Wagner knocked off Central Connecticut State 87-77, with Kenneth Ortiz leading the way with 16 points.
St. Francis (NY), the No. 4 seed, wasn't as fortunate, losing at home to No. 5 seed Quinnipiac, 80-72.
The NEC semifinals will be held on Sunday. Wagner will host No. 3 seed Robert Morris at noon; LIU will host Quinnipiac at 6 p.m.