Villanova Rolls Past Michigan 79-62 For Second NCAA Title In Three Years [VIDEO]
Villanova captured its second national title in three years on Monday night with a 79-62 victory over Michigan in the NCAA Tournament men’s basketball final.
Villanova vs. Michigan NCAA Final score, highlights
The top-seeded Wildcats (36-4) set a school record for wins by defeating the third-seeded Wolverines at the Alamodome in San Antonio, an arena filled with 67,831 fans.
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Coach Jay Wright last led Villanova to a national championship in 2016, when Kris Jenkins sank a buzzer-beater against North Carolina — the 2017 national champions — to seal the win.
“I really can’t put my mind around it,” Wright said about his second NCAA trophy. “I never dreamt of this. We just took it one game at a time. I thought we played our best game in the championship game.”
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Though the Wildcats got off to a slow start on Monday night, seemingly struggling to keep up with Michigan’s offense, they quickly found their groove and Villanova led 37-28 at halftime, thanks to a 23-7 run.
One of Villanova’s greatest assets was sophomore Donte DiVincenzo, who logged 18 of his career-high 31 points in the first half.
“This team, we’re so close,” DiVicenzo said “To experience this with these guys, it’s a dream come true.”
National player of the year Jalen Brunson, however, had difficulty outmatching the sometimes powerful Michigan defense. Brunson finished with nine points on 4-for-13 shooting.
The Wildcats also out-rebounded the Wolverines 38-27, and set an NCAA single-season record with 464 3-pointers.
Michigan (33-8) was the national runner-up in 2013, but were unable to end the Big Ten title drought that dates back to Michigan State’s championship in 2000. Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman led the Wolverines with 23 points. Moe Wagner added 16 points, five of which came in the second half. Wagner had 24 points and 15 rebounds in Saturday’s win over Loyola-Chicago.
Villanova’s Eric Paschall didn’t score until the second half, although he gave the Wildcats quite the edge. He got five consecutive points to open the second half. His reverse layup put the Wildcats up 44-30 less than two minutes into the period.
The Wildcats are the first team since North Carolina in 2009 to win all six NCAA Tournament games by double digits. The team’s average margin for victories was 17 points.
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