After Saturday night’s Elite 8 games, Sunday’s games had a lot to live up to. Michigan State and Louisville gave us just that … an overtime thriller that Michigan State eventually pulled away to win, 76-70.
The score in the first half was back and forth for the first 13 minutes when Louisville took a five-point lead that they built onto for a halftime score of 40-32. The first 11 minutes of the second half were led by Louisville; after that, Michigan State took the lead and only lost it once for about 20 seconds after two made free throws by Louisville’s Wayne Blackshear. Louisville then tied the game with a free throw by Mangok Mathiang who could have won the game with his second free throw but missed and sent it into overtime.
Tom Izzo and Rick Pitino had only met each other twice in their careers prior to this game; both of those games were also in the NCAA Tournament. The first game they were in the Elite 8 and a No. 2 Spartans team upset Pitino’s No. 1 Cardinals, the second game was in the Sweet 16 when the No. 4 Cardinals beat Izzo lead No. 1 Michigan State. Louisville dominated the paint outscoring Michigan State 24-10 in the first half
His stat line may not have been the most impressive even among his teammates, but Michigan State’s Bryn Forbes scored the Spartans’ first five points in overtime. He finished with 14 points off the bench.
For Louisville, Montrezl Harrell, the junior, had 15 points, 8 rebounds and 4 assists.
Strange, Yet True
Michigan State had the same amount of turnovers in the first half as they did their entire last game.
No. 7 Michigan State will take on the winner of Duke versus Gonzaga in the Final Four.
No. 4 Louisville ends its season with a record of 27-8.