March 30, 2014
Site: Indianapolis, Ind. (Lucas Oil Stadium)
Event: NCAA Tournament (Elite Eight)
Score: Kentucky 75, #7 Michigan 72
Records: U-M (28-9), UK (28-10)
Next U-M Event: Season Complete
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- The University of Michigan men's basketball team (No. 7 AP, No. 8 ESPN/USA Today) tied the game on a wild scramble with less the 30 seconds to go, only to see Kentucky (RV AP, No. 22 ESPN/USA Today) bury a deep three-pointer with four seconds remaining in a 75-72 final on Sunday evening (March 30) in the NCAA Tournament Elite Eight held inside Lucas Oil Stadium. Aaron Harrison's contested three-pointer was the shot that won the game, and it allowed the Wildcats, who were ranked No. 1 in the preseason AP poll, to advance to the Final Four in Arlington, Texas, where they will match up against Wisconsin.
Sophomore Nik Stauskas (Mississauga, Ontario/St. Mark's School [Mass.]) led all scorers with 24 points, and his classmate Glenn Robinson III (St. John, Ind./Lake Central) scored 14 points and grabbed four rebounds. Graduate student Jordan Morgan (Detroit, Mich./University of Detroit Jesuit) finished with 11 points -- including the bucket that briefly tied the game late -- on 5-of-6 shooting in his final game playing in the Maize and Blue.
After two Stauskas free throws with 2:26 left cut Kentucky's lead to 69-67, Aaron Harrison nailed a three in the corner, but Robinson matched it on the other end to bring the score to 72-70. The Wolverines forced a shot clock violation on the next possession and called timeout with 56 seconds left. After grabbing offensive rebounds on three straight missed shots, Morgan made a tip-in to tie the score at 72, and Kentucky called timeout with 27 ticks left.
Michigan fouled to stop the clock with 10 seconds to go, and Aaron Harrison made a deep three from the left wing despite a hand in his face by sophomore Caris LeVert (Pickerington, Ohio/Central), putting the Wildcats up 75-72 with 2.6 seconds remaining. Both teams proceeded to use timeouts, and Stauskas' heave from half court missed as time expired.
Stauskas drained a three from the left wing to give Michigan a 9-2 lead less than four minutes into the contest. With U-M up 14-6, Kentucky made three straight baskets in the paint to get to within two at 14-12 and came within one point on an old-fashioned three-point play with 11:05 left in the first half.
After Kentucky came within three points at 25-22, the Maize and Blue went on a 7-0 run. LeVert started it off with a jumper, then Stauskas scored the next five points with a three-point play and a scoop layup, forcing the Wildcats to call timeout with 5:09 left in the half. Kentucky scored eight consecutive points out of the stopppage to make the score 32-30 and force a Michigan timeout at 2:54.
Stauskas made the front end of a one-and-one to put Michigan ahead 37-35 with 23 seconds left, and Julius Randle made a basket just before the buzzer to tie the score at 37 going into halftime.
Michigan shot 14-of-28 (50 percent) from the floor in the first half and went 3-of-8 (38 percent) from three. Kentucky went 15-of-27 (56 percent) on field goals, making two of its three attempts from long distance (67 percent). Stauskas led with 18 first-half points on 5-of-7 shooting.
Kentucky scored first out of the break to take its first lead of the game at 39-37, but the Wolverines tied it up immediately with a LeVert floater only to see the Wildcats score six straight points.
U-M battled back to tie the contest at 47, as LeVert nailed a three from the top of the key with 14:43 remaining.
Stauskas cut baseline and threw down a monster dunk to tie the game at 51 with 13:12 left, then Robinson dunked in transition following a Michigan stop on defense to give U-M a 53-51 lead, forcing Kentucky to call timeout at 12:25. Then with 11:31 to play, junior Jon Horford (Grand Ledge, Mich./Grand Ledge) dunked off a pick and roll with LeVert to make the score 55-51.
The Wildcats answered with 11 straight points for their largest lead of the game. This forced Michigan to use a timeout with 6:24 left, and out of the break, Robinson made a corner three to end the scoring drought. A little more than a minute later, Morgan's three-point play pulled the Wolverines within one point of Kentucky at 62-61 with 4:47 remaining.
Michigan finished the game shooting 27-of-57 (47 percent) and made seven of its 18 attempts from three (39 percent). Kentucky shot 31-of-58 (53 percent) and went 7-of-11 (64 percent) from beyond the arc. The Wildcats dominated the rebounding battle, 35-24, with 17 boards coming on the offensive glass. Kentucky also blocked six shots to Michigan's one. Randle had 16 points and 11 rebounds, while James Young scored 13. Aaron Harrison had 12 points, all coming on three-pointers, and Lee finished with 10 points and eight rebounds.
Stauskas and LeVert, who finished with nine points and five assists, were named to the Midwest Regional All-Tournament Team following the game, along with Randle (the Most Outstanding Player), Lee and Aaron Harrison.
Contact: Tom Wywrot (734) 763-4423