Still Burke found a way to impact as a distributor (seven assists) on a rough night that at one point saw him leave the game in the second half following a hard fall. Wolters could relate, as the South Dakota State star knocked down just 3-of-14 shots for 10 points. With Burke off his game, the Michigan supporting cast picked up the slack. And that carried the Wolverines to victory.
Key moment: Michigan led by just four points at halftime, 30-26. The Wolverines went on an 11-4 run to start the half and pushed their lead to 11 points. From there, Michigan cruised to the 15-point triumph, outscoring South Dakota State, 41-30, in the second half.
Key number: 45, Michigan’s 3-point shooting percentage. The Wolverines hit 9-of-20 attempts from beyond the arc. It was part of a hot-shooting night for a Michigan squad that hit 50 percent of its attempts overall in this second-round game.
Key player: Hat’s off to the kids of former NBA stars. Tim Hardaway, Jr. helped fill the scoring gap created by Burke’s off night, notching 21 points. The junior was on fire from 3-point range, hitting 5-of-7. Hardaway was last over 20 on Feb. 5 vs. Ohio State. Big props to Glenn Robinson III, who also had 21 points, hitting 8-of-9 shots. Robinson had cracked double-figures just once in the previous six games. He last had more than 20 vs. Penn State on Feb. 17, when he also had 21.
What’s next: Michigan will take on the winner of the No. 5 VCU vs. No. 12 Akron game. A win would push the Wolverines to their first Sweet 16 since 1994.
|About Tom Dienhart||BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men’s basketball for BTN.com and BTN TV. Find him on Twitter and Facebook, read all of his work at btn.com/tomdienhart, and subscribe to his posts via RSS. Also, send questions to his weekly mailbag using the form below and read all of his previous answers in his reader mailbag section.|
And if you want to leave a comment on this post, use the box below. All comments need to be approved by a moderator.