March 24, 2013
Site: Palo Alto, Calif. (Maples Pavilion)
Event: NCAA Tournament (First Round)
Score: Michigan 60, Villanova 52
Records: U-M (22-10), Villanova (21-11)
Next U-M Event: Tuesday, March 26 -- at Stanford - NCAA Tournament Second Round (Palo Alto, Calif.), 6:30 p.m. PDT
PALO ALTO, Calif. -- The University of Michigan women's basketball team advanced to the second round of the 2013 NCAA Tournament with a 60-52 victory over ninth-seeded Villanova on Sunday (March 24) at Maples Pavilion on the Stanford University campus. The Wolverines had four players score in double figures and advanced to take on top-seeded Stanford on Tuesday night (March 26, 6:30 p.m. PDT).
Villanova scored on its first possession of the second half to tie the score at 26 apiece. Senior forward Rachel Sheffer (Watervliet, Mich./Watervliet) converted a left-hand hook to regain the lead for U-M and ignite a 9-0 run that gave Michigan a 35-26 lead at the 15:18 mark. The Wildcats patiently chipped into the Wolverines lead and cut the deficit to one point at the 7:48 mark but never tied it.
Sheffer had a double-double, scoring 16 points and tying a career high with 13 rebounds. She became the fourth Wolverine to record a double-double in NCAA Tournament history. Sheffer fell one rebound shy of the school record for rebounds in an NCAA Tournament game.
Senior guard Kate Thompson (Plymouth, Minn./Wayzata) scored 13 of her team-high 17 points in the second half to help propel the Wolverines into the second round for the third time in school history. Senior guard Jenny Ryan (Saginaw, Mich./Saginaw Nouvel Catholic Central) scored a career-best 13 points in NCAA Tournament play and added three rebounds, three assists and two steals.
Ryan led the way for the Wolverines in the first half, scoring 11 of the team's 26 points. She shot 4-of-5 from the field and knocked down both three-point attempts on consecutive trips. Scheffer scored seven points in the first half and added six rebounds.
Ryan scored nine straight points for the Wolverines, converting a layup and free throw for a three-point play and two three-pointers to open up a 24-17 lead after the less-than-eight-minute timeout. Those nine points came on three straight trips for the Wolverines. Thompson added a jumper that pushed the lead to 26-17. Villanova went on a 7-0 run over the final three minutes to close the deficit to 26-24 after the first 20 minutes.
Both squads shot less than 40 percent in the opening frame, and Michigan outrebounded Villanova, 18-12. The Wildcats got 12 points from their bench.
Thompson hit three triples in the final 20 minutes, including one at 3:55 to give Michigan a 50-43 lead. Thompson added a layup as the shot clock wound down and scored seven of the team's 12 points during a four-minute stretch and added an assist on senior forward Nya Jordan's (Detroit, Mich./Detroit Community) layup at 2:18.