undergroundnewsroom.com April 22, 2018

Michigan Basketball wins ugly against Florida, but is headed to Final Four

26 March 2018, 01:39 | Rodolfo Quinn

Final Four preview: No. 3 Michigan vs. No. 11 Loyola Chicago — keys to victory

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MI held off a late Florida State rally and hung on for a 58-54 win over Florida State in the West Regional Semifinal.

For a team that needed game-winning jumpers in the final 10 seconds in the first three rounds of the tournament, Kansas State was the lowest seeded team that the Ramblers played in the tournament.

Get the same cap the players were wearing on their court after their victory over Florida State with the Michigan Wolverines Nike 2018 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament Final Four Bound South Regional Champions Locker Room Adjustable Hat.

Florida State coach Leonard Hamilton was widely criticized on Saturday night after his team's Elite Eight loss to MI for what many felt was faulty late-game management.

His two 3-point plays in the first half were huge, so was his 3-pointer in the second half which sparked an 11-0 run. But not for lack of trying. Florida State went back to Savoy for a game-tying attempt, but he missed his last 3-point tries.

"I don't know who Sister Jean is, no disrespect", he said. "We've grown so much as a team since then. We were playing with a chip on our shoulder".

Who's going to take it home in the second half?

After a basket by Florida State to open the second half, MI went on an 11-0 run over the next five minutes.

Loyola will play in its first Final Four since 1963, when the Ramblers won their only championship.

Tonight, we are all Ramblers.

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Never more so than in the first half when Florida State committed 14 of its total 15 turnovers for the game in trailing MI 27-26 at intermission. "Everybody realized what we had to do". Both teams played a little out of character.

We started Unknown and finished Unforgettable.

MI had developed a defense after years of offensive superiority.

Two transition buckets pushed it to 38-28 at 14:30, and the Staples Center exploded, forcing another Florida State timeout. Then, after an FSU hoop, another free throw pushed it to four points. A Zavier Simpson free throw upped Michigan's lead to 56-52 with 39 seconds left but Cofer's layup with 24 seconds left made it 56-54.

Michigan's Zavier Simpson and Duncan Robinson combined to hit three free throws in the final minute to keep MI ahead. "With 15 seconds left on the clock?"

"Tonight I thought MI was a little bit better than we were for an eight, nine- or 10-minute period, and it was very hard for us to overcome that". MI is moving on to the Final Four despite not playing their best and they deserve credit for that.

That is the other part of this: Everything about this Loyola-Chicago team is good. "We've just got to hang in there, don't give them second shots, try to takeaway the 3 ball, and drive". And kept coming back.

Florida State coach Leonard Hamilton was criticized for his conduct in a postgame interview with Dana Jacobson. "It took a while but they finally figured things out". The Noles had done what few thought they could in getting to the Elite Eight, but choked under pressure. But that next step is the big one.

Dude, you do not mess with a 98-year-old nun.

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