You choose, we deliver
If you are interested in this story, you might be interested in others from The Journal Gazette. Go to www.journalgazette.net/newsletter and pick the subjects you care most about. We'll deliver your customized daily news report at 3 a.m. Fort Wayne time, right to your email.

Colleges

  • Mustangs run away from Texas Southern
    DALLAS (AP) — Nic Moore scored 17 points on 7-of-9 shooting, with seven steals and six assists, as the Warsaw Community High School graduate led SMU over Texas Southern 72-59 on Wednesday.
  • Tar Heels shocked in Battle 4 by Bulldogs
    After yet another second-half possession ended with a miscue, all Roy Williams could do on the North Carolina sideline was cross his arms and shake his head. It was that sort of day for the Tar Heels.
  • Butler knocks off No. 5 North Carolina, 74-66
    PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas – Butler’s shooting numbers were awful. And it didn’t matter. The Bulldogs did more than enough to take down No.
Advertisement

Michigan holds off Syracuse to reach title game

– Don’t call these guys the Fab Five.

Michigan’s latest group of young stars is determined to leave its own legacy.

Attacking Syracuse’s suffocating zone defense in the first half with three-pointers, crisp passing and a fearless attitude, the Wolverines advanced to the national championship game with a 61-56 victory over the Orange in the Final Four on Saturday night.

Michigan (31-7) will be going for its first national title since 1989 when it faces Louisville on Monday at the Georgia Dome.

Syracuse (30-10) failed to complete an all-Big East final in the fabled league’s last season before breaking up.

The Wolverines got sloppy in the second half and had to hang on at the end, winning despite a tough night for Associated Press player of the year Trey Burke. He scored only seven points.

That made for some nervous moments as Michigan got a little too conservative trying to run out the clock.

Trailing 58-56, the Orange had a chance to force overtime. But Brandon Triche was called for a foul when Jordan Morgan stepped in to take the charge with 19.2 seconds left.

After Jon Horford made only one of two free throws, Syracuse called timeout and set up a play.

Curiously, the Orange didn’t attempt a tying three-pointer.

Instead, Trevor Cooney drove the lane looking to put up an easier shot. But the ball was swatted away, Michigan saved it from going out of bounds and Morgan wound up taking a long pass the other way.

He threw down a thunderous slam with just more than a second remaining to cap the triumph.

With Burke struggling (he made only one shot from the field all night), Michigan got an unexpected contribution off the bench from freshmen Caris LeVert and Spike Albrecht.

LeVert scored eight points and Albrecht chipped in with six – all of them crucial after the Wolverines went cold in the second half and struggled to put away the Orange.

Tim Hardaway Jr. led the Wolverines with 13 points.

Of course, there’s nothing unusual about Michigan getting big performances from first-year players.

This team starts three freshmen – Glenn Robinson III, Mitch McGary and Nik Stauskas – which, of course, rekindled memories of the great Fab Five teams of the early 1990s.

These kids want nothing to do with the comparisons, saying they haven’t done nearly enough to be mentioned in the same breath with a team that changed the face of college basketball.

Well, if the Wolverines can win their next game, they’ll accomplish something that eluded the Fab Five: a national title.

Syracuse was looking to give 68-year-old Jim Boeheim another title, a decade after the Orange won it all in their last trip to the Final Four.

Boeheim has no plans to retire, but his quest for a championship is on hold for another year.

Advertisement