Michigan wins the first truly great game of the NCAA tournament

Lead changes, big runs and a tight finish … this is what March is all about. There was even a buzzer-beating 3-pointer at the end of regulation (that didn’t factor in the outcome). After Thursday’s first round was dominated by chalk, Day 2 of the NCAA tournament delivered a gem right from the first tipoff Friday.

Michigan outlasted Oklahoma State, 92-91, in a game that it trailed early and led by just a point at the half.

The Wolverines looked out of sorts for much of the game but finished strong – going 14-for-19 from the field, including 10-of-13 from 3-point land, after falling behind 52-46 with 15:53 to go in the second half. Michigan drained 16 3s overall to set a school record for an NCAA tournament game.

Wolverines guard Derrick Walton Jr. led all scorers with 26 points, hitting six of his nine 3-point attempts and adding 11 assists. The Cowboys, meanwhile, hit only seven 3s in the game. Jawun Evans led the way for Oklahoma State with 23 points and 12 assists – his 3-pointer at the buzzer didn’t change the outcome but wasn’t meaningless for bettors.

With its sixth consecutive win, Michigan stays white-hot on the heels of its four-victories-in-four-days tear through the Big Ten Tournament. That run, of course, followed a terrifying incident on the airport runway as the Wolverines tried to get to Washington, D.C., for the event.

Next up for Michigan: a second-round matchup against either second-seeded Louisville or No. 15 seed Jacksonville State.