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MI upsets Louisville in Midwest region
February 22 2018, 04:46 | Perry Erickson
Jonathan Daniel Getty Images
Quentin Snider was shut down, with three assists and zero points. Louisville, on the other hand, is averaging 11 turnovers per game this year and coughed up six in the first half. Senior Mangok Mathiang continued his hot play, scoring five early.
When Michigan needed clutch points in the most dire way, forward D.J. Wilson was able to answer the call with his clutch free throws down the stretch. The victor of the Oregon/Rhode Island game, airing tonight at 7:10 p.m. on TBS, will play the Wolverines in the Sweet 16.
It was over when: Louisville finished the first half on an 8-0 run to take a 36-28 advantage at the break. Add in Quinton Snider's 0-fer performance (0 points on 0-of-9 shooting, 0-of-7 from three), and Louisville made it hard on themselves when Wagner got hot and found the right match-ups to attack.
The Cards, meanwhile, also operated well down low, getting 44 points in the paint, but they were unable to hit outside shots, going 5-of-20 from three-point range.
Bridges came out with 14:55 left in the first half and the score tied at nine.
After trailing 47-38, the Wolverines dominated the final 14 minutes en route to the Sweet 16 berth. The trouble that Louisville's system can create for opponents is directly countered by what MI does well - move the ball and hit open shots.
Michigan's second-half performance was remarkable yet again. Wagner practically oozes potential - in games like Sunday's, he looks like a future National Basketball Association first-round pick. DJ Wilson contributed 19 points, while Zak Irvin and Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman each scored 16.
MI attacked Louisville's switching defense to perfection in the second half. If he had not made those shots, the Wolverines would've lost due to the last-second 3-pointer by the Cowboys.
The Wolverines didn't look as pretty as the squad that almost put 100 points on the board against Oklahoma State on Sunday. A Wagner drive with 1:17 left made it 67-61 and put the Wolverines on the verge of the upset. After Walton and Mitchell traded baskets, Mitchell drove the lane to cut the Wolverines' lead to 69-67 at the 18.7 mark.
A lay-up from UM's Derrick Walton Jr with 29 seconds remaining was the final straw for U of L.
MI forward D.J. Wilson made four free throws in the final 17.3 seconds to secure the win.