Michigan basketball will face LSU for spot in NCAA Tournament’s Sweet 16
The Michigan women will play LSU on Sunday in Baton Rouge Michigan basketball will face LSU in the NCAA Tournament's Sweet 16 on Sunday, after they beat UNLV 71-59 to set up a second-round game with 3 seed LSU in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The game will start at 7:30 p.m. ET (6:30 local) and will be televised on ESPN. Michigan made it there with an impressive all-around performance against a UNLV team that entered the game with 22 straight wins and just two losses on the season. The Wolverines feel prepared for the challenge, as they have reached the Elite Eight twice this year. The winner will travel to Greenville, South Carolina, and play the winner of Sunday night’s game between 2 seed Utah and 10 seed Princeton.
Published : 2 weeks ago by Andrew Kahn | [email protected], akahn11 in Sports
Michigan has been in this spot before, and will hope for the same result on Sunday.
In the 2021 NCAA Tournament, Michigan was a 6 seed in a pod hosted by a 3 seed from the SEC. Michigan won its opener before taking down Tennessee in Knoxville to reach the Sweet 16.
On Friday, Michigan, a 6 seed, beat UNLV to set up a second-round game with 3 seed LSU in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Michigan will try to get to the Sweet 16 for the third straight year.
Sunday’s game will start at 7:30 p.m. ET (6:30 local) and will be televised on ESPN.
Michigan made it there with an impressive all-around performance against a UNLV team that entered the game with 22 straight wins and just two losses on the season. The Lady Rebels were a trendy upset pick, and Michigan head coach Kim Barnes Arico noticed. She said the Wolverines played with a chip on their shoulder in a 71-59 victory.
The Wolverines set the tone defensively from the opening tip, allowing just nine first-quarter points. Their physical play wore down UNLV.
Barnes Arico was particularly pleased with Michigan’s post defense. That will be critical against LSU as well, whose star player is 6-foot-3 forward Angel Reese. The junior poured in 34 points (and added 15 rebounds) in LSU’s 73-50 win over 14 seed on Hawaii on Friday. She made 13-of-20 shots and went 8-of-12 from the foul line.
Michigan is familiar with Reese, as she played the past two seasons at Maryland before transferring to LSU the same year Kim Mulkey took the head coaching job in Baton Rouge.
Like UNLV, the Tigers had a super long win streak this season (23 straight to start the year) and enter the Michigan game with just two losses: at South Carolina on Feb. 22 and against Tennessee in the SEC Tournament semifinals. LSU is 16-0 at home this season.
The Wolverines feel prepared for the challenge. In addition to the win on Tennessee’s home court in the 2021 NCAA Tournament, Michigan reached the Elite Eight last season. Thirteen of Michigan’s 21 wins this year have come away from home.
“When you go to Iowa you’re going to play in front of 15,000 screaming fans,” Barnes Arico said after Friday’s win. “When we went to Indiana we played in front of 15,000 screaming fans. The same with Ohio State. So I think all of those situations have prepared us for Sunday. I also think our league truly has prepared us.”
Indiana earned a 1 seed. Maryland and Iowa are 2 seeds. Ohio State is a 3. Michigan went 0-7 against those teams this season, but is fully healthy and confident entering Sunday.
The winner will travel to Greenville, South Carolina, one of two regional sites, and play the winner of Sunday night’s game between 2 seed Utah and 10 seed Princeton.
Topics: Louisiana State University, Academia, Basketball, College Sports, Michigan