SAN ANTONIO – A strong second-half surge saw the No. 3 Michigan Wolverines end the magical run by No. 11 Loyola-Chicago to win 69–57 at the Alamodome on Saturday night in the first semifinal of the men’s Final Four.
Loyola started off strong, using their quick pace and scrambling defense. Both teams struggled to score in the first half, going a combined 19-for-55. However, it was the Ramblers who took a 29-22 lead into the locker room at the break.
The Wolverines responded with a huge second-half run, fueled by forward Moritz Wagner. Michigan tweaked their defense and did not allow a single backdoor pass in the second 20 minute half. They used their own speed to catch Loyola on their heels and go up 54-47 with less than five minutes to play.
Michigan’s defense suffocated the Ramblers, who went without a field goal for at five minutes. Wagner weaved his way to the basket for two points, putting the Wolverines up nine with just over a minute to play.
The loss ends Loyola-Chicago’s 14-game winning streak and magical run in the tournament.
Meanwhile, Michigan advances to the National Championship Game for the first time since 2003 and will face the winner of Kansas and Villanova.