Michigan ended Loyola-Chicago's Cinderella run with a 69–57 win Saturday night in the first semifinal of the men's Final Four.
The victory clinched the No. 3 seed Wolverines’ first trip to the national championship since 2013 and ended No. 11 seed Loyola's 14-game winning streak. Michigan powered through the second half on the strength of forward Moritz Wagner, who finished with 24 points and 15 rebounds.
Both teams struggled making field goals in the first half, with Loyola shooting 10–for–24 and Michigan going 9–for–31. The Ramblers' quick pace made the Wolverines look rushed, and Michigan paid the price with eight turnovers before the break. Wagner helped carry the Wolverines through those early troubles with a commanding performance on the offensive glass.
Loyola held a 29–22 lead at the half, but Michigan battled back and then took a lead with just under seven minutes to play. The Ramblers started to lose their composure as the Wolverines picked up speed.
The Ramblers had captured America's heart as the longest-running Cinderella story of the tournament, beating Miami, Tennessee, Nevada and Kansas State on the way to the Final Four.
With the Michigan win, America will see less of Sister Jean Delores-Schmidt, Loyola’s 98-year-old team chaplain who quickly became March's breakout star. She was caught by TV cameras in the tunnel hugging players after the game.
Michigan will face the winner of the second semifinal between Kansas and Villanova in the national championship Monday.