Michigan upsets Louisville to continue NCAA roll

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - MARCH 19: Moritz Wagner #13 of the Michigan Wolverines celebrates a shot with D.J. Wilson #5 in the second half against the Louisville Cardinals during the second round of the 2017 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at the Bankers Life Fieldhouse on March 19, 2017 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Michigan Wolverines won 73-69. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

INDIANAPOLIS — Michigan rallied in the second half to upset Louisville 73-69 for a berth in the NCAA Tournament’s Sweet 16 Sunday afternoon at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Louisville was a No. 2 seed while Michigan is a No. 7 seed in this year’s Midwest Regional.

Louisville took control from the get-go, jumping out to a 3-point lead at the outset and 7-point bulges at 15-8 and 21-14. Coach John Beilein’s Wolverines whittled their way back to within 27-26 and then tied the score for the first time at 28-all with 1 1/2 minutes to go until intermission.

But Louisville then rattled off eight straight points and was up 36-28 at the break.

The Cardinals continued with another outburst at the beginning of the second half, going in front by nine at 41-32, 43-34, 45-36 and 47-38. The Wolverines then closed to within 50-49, where the score remained at the midway point of the finale.

Michigan then knotted the score once again at 51-51 at the 9:16 mark and took its first lead of the contest at 53-51 with 8:51 to go. The Wolverines were up 64-59 at the 3-minute mark, 65-61 with two minutes left to play and 67-63 during a timeout with exactly 1:00 showing on the clock.

Coach Rick Pitino’s Cardinals closed to within 67-65 before Michigan upped the gap to 69-65 with 23 seconds remaining. Louisville then trimmed the margin to 69-67 but free throws pushed Michigan back up 71-67 at 17.3 seconds.

The Cards closed to within 71-69 but once again Wolverine free throws upped the edge back to 73-69 and the clock wound down from there.

Michigan improved to 26-11 and now has a 7-game winning streak.

The Wolverines will now play the winner of Sunday night’s Oregon vs. Rhode Island game in Sweet Sixteen action on Thursday in Kansas City.

Louisville finished 25-9 on the campaign.

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