Charlotte, N.C. - The Michigan basketball team saw its' season come to a close in a heart-breaking 73-71 third round NCAA Tournament loss to the West Regional's No. 1-seeded Duke Blue Devils on Sunday afternoon.
Michigan had five scorers finish with double digits, led by Darius Morris' 16, but the Wolverines bid to force overtime fell just short when Morris' eight-foot floater found the back of the iron. U-M rallied from a 15-point deficit midway through the second half.
In the first half Duke built a slim 37-33 lead while scorching the nets and dominating the glass. After U-M took its only lead of the game, a 4-2 advantage, Duke went up 13-6 with Kyle Singler scoring seven straight points.
Zack Novak and Evan Smotrycz then each hit a pair from deep as the Wolverines fought to trim the lead back to one. Smotrycz second triple of the half, a jumper with 5:44 remaining, tied the score 26-26.
Duke scored the next five before Stu Douglass ended the streak, and the teams exchanged buckets over the rest of the half with Duke claiming the four-point lead.
Nolan Smith, who led Duke with 24 points, opened the second half hot scoring 10 of Duke's first 12 second half points in a run that saw the top seed grow the lead to 52-39 with 12:26 left in the game.
Michigan snapped the Duke run, but a pair of three-point plays saw Duke make it 58-43 with 10:51 left.
Duke maintained a 12-point lead until the 6:07 mark when the Wolverines clawed back into the contest. Jordan Morgan scored twice in the paint sandwiched around a Darius Morris jumper to make it 68-62.
Ryan Kelly scored to end the Michigan run, but Tim Hardaway Jr., who finished with 15, scored the next seven points, including a three-pointer with 1:30 left, to trim the Duke lead to one.
Kyrie Irving answered the Michigan triple with a pull-up jumper to give Duke a 72-69 edge with 33-seconds left. Morris trimmed it to 72-71 with a layup with 10 seconds left, but, after a quick free throw left Duke up just two, Darius Morris' runner in the lane came up just short to force overtime.
Duke Ends U-M's Tournament Run
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