INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Aaron Harrison made a 3-pointer from NBA range with 2.3 seconds left Sunday to liftKentucky and its freshmen to a 75-72 win over Michigan and a trip to the Final Four.
After Harrison’s teammate, Julius Randle, inadvertently tipped in the tying shot on Michigan’s previous possession, the eighth-seeded Wildcats got the ball to the 6-foot-6 guard, whose twin brother, Andrew, is another of the five freshmen in Kentucky’s starting lineup.
Standing a good three feet behind the arc, Harrison elevated over Caris LeVert and took a bit of contact on the arm from the Michigan guard as he shot. No matter. The shot rattled in, and for the second straight game in the Midwest Regional, Harrison had the go-ahead points in a tense game for the Wildcats (28-10). In this one, he scored all 12 of his points off four 3-pointers over the last 8:05.
Nik Stauskas missed a halfcourt heave at the buzzer for second-seeded Michigan (28-9), and moments later, Harrison was under a dog pile — or make that a puppy pile. This is the first all-freshman starting lineup to make the Final Four since another well-known group, the Fab Five of Michigan, did it in 1992.
“I’m gonna see everyone in Dallas this year,” coach John Calipari said, with a Texas Twang, as he addressed the crowd before the nets came down.
The Wildcats will play Wisconsin next Saturday outside of Big D.
Stauskas finished with 24 points for the Wolverines, who finished a win shy of their second straight Final Four.
Randle had 16 points and 11 rebounds for his 24th double-double and was named the region’s most outstanding player.