March 18, 2018

NCAA tournament Midwest Region runback: Michigan State crushes Miami on Friday

19 March 2017, 02:46 | Winifred Adams

It lived up to the hype as MI, seeded seventh in the Midwest region, poured home a tournament-record 16 three-pointers (16-29, .552) with a total of 16 lead changes and 12 ties throughout a frenetic 40 minutes of play. MI has become one of the biggest stories of March, winning the Big Ten tournament after a plane mishap on the runway caused a late arrival.

The Spartans' remarkable record as an underdog in the NCAA Tournament is one of those Izzo isn't so sure is a good thing.

Kuran Iverson scored 17 points and Hassan Martin had 12 points and eight rebounds as 11th-seeded Rhode Island (25-9) earned its ninth straight victory.

Michigan State then used an 8-2 spurt out of the locker room to take total control and cruised from there.

Combined, the Hurricanes' Davon Reed, Ja'Quan Newton and Bruce Brown average about 40 points per game and nine assists.

The Oki State Cowboys (20-12) are a guard oriented offensive scheme and the squad is led by All Conference guard Jawun Evans.

"He's a really athletic player", Bridges said. The Cardinals have won all three meetings in the series, including the 2013 national championship game.

The Wolverines have won six in a row and need one more to reach their first Sweet 16 since 2014.

Jawun Evans led the Cowboys, almost posting a triple-double in a losing effort with 23 points, 12 assists and seven rebounds as OSU's first season under Brad Underwood came to an end.

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- Miami was making its third NCAA Tournament appearance during coach Jim Larranaga's six seasons at the school. After the winning the 62-57 game against Syracuse in the first round of ACC tournament, they lost 78-53 to North Carolina in the quarterfinals. Moses Kingsley led the Razorbacks with 23 points.

In Greenville, South Carolina, Justin Jackson scored 19 of his 21 points by halftime as No. 1 seed North Carolina ripped Texas Southern, 103-64.

"I told my guys, all I want to do is work another night and get a chance to go against one of the top teams", Michigan State coach Tom Izzo said. It might seem like a trivial fact, but this one only one year ago.

Evans hit a 3-pointer as time expired to bring the game within a point. USC advances to play Baylor in the second round of the East region on Sunday.

MI attempted more 3-pointers (29) than two-point shots (27).

Jo Lual-Acuil scored 16 points and Johnathan Motley added 15 points and 10 rebounds for the Bears (26-7), who were upset in the first round by Georgia State and Yale the previous two years.

The first round of March Madness is in the books while the second round is wrapping up. They made 29 of their last 47 shots for the game.

Rhode Island 84, Creighton 72 - Jeff Dowtin scored a career-high 23 points with a ideal day at the free-throw line, upstart Rhode Island answered every threat and the Rams ran right into the next round of the NCAA Tournament by stunning cold-shooting No. 6 seed Creighton 84-72 on Friday in an opener of the Midwest Region.

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