MI wins first round shootout with Oklahoma State, advances to Sunday

MI wins first round shootout with Oklahoma State, advances to Sunday

Wilson free throws gave MI a 92-88 lead with less than five seconds to play, and the Wolverines shrugged off a last-second three-pointer to advance to Sunday's (March 19) second round against the victor of second-seeded Louisville and 15th-seeded Jacksonville State.

They aren't finished yet after making 16 3-pointers - including 11 of 15 in the second half - to outpace the 10th-seeded Cowboys (20-13).

Meanwhile, Kansas is 5-1 ATS in their last six NCAA Tournament games as a favorite, and 4-1 ATS in their last five NCAA Tournament games overall.

Three players are averaging at least 10.4 points per gae for Michigan State, they are: Miles Bridges (16.7), Nick Ward (13.7) and Eron Harris (10.4) per game.

For comparison, the Wolverines put up at least 63 shots in a game once (74 field goal attempts in its overtime loss at Iowa on January 1) and Walton and Duncan Robinson, Michigan's top two long-range shooters, have combined for 147 made 3-pointers.

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MI led 41-40 following a fast-paced first half.

"He's a heck of a point guard", said teammate Zak Irvin, who scored 16. When Senior Phil Forte, III fouled Abdur-Rahkman on a three-point bucket, the MI comeback had been complete.

Moreover, this is the 31st NCAA Tournament all-time trip for the Spartans. "We just play the way coach wants us to play, execute our plays and just really guard on the defensive end". The Cardinals have won all three meetings in the series, including the 2013 national championship game. And as Evans showed them with the final of his 23 points, they needed every one.

Miami, which looked poised to beat up the Spartans in the early stages, particularly in the paint, fell apart after being blasted by a 20-2 Michigan State run to end the first half. The big fella was a force in the paint, notching 19 points on 8-of-9 shooting with seven rebounds. And, honestly, things weren't looking good, as MSU was a turnover machine.

The 6-foot-3 junior also came through with a pair of free throws with 18.3 seconds left following a whistle in which officials reviewed Desi Rodriguez's foul to stop the clock and changed it to a flagrant foul. Davon Reed added 12 points and Bruce Brown 11 for the Hurricanes, who shot just 40.4 percent (21 of 52) and struggled to slow Michigan State's tandem of Ward and Bridges.

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SMU's Shake Milton missed a floater at the buzzer.

Moe Wagner had a career-high 26 points, and D.J. Wilson made four free throws in the final 17 seconds to clinch it. Bennie Boatright and Chimezie Metu each added 14 for USC, which advances to play Baylor in the second round of the East region on Sunday. "And they were able to keep that control throughout the second half". The Wolverines almost never made it to Washington for that tournament.

Ian Baker and Braxton Huggins each scored 19 points for New Mexico State (28-6).

Seventh-seeded MI needed every point it could muster in a game that ended with a parade to the free-throw line, a buzzer-beating 3-pointer and a foe that refused to go away. "So they do a real good job keeping the ball out of the paint".

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