Oregon grabbed a pair of key offensive rebounds to help the Ducks defeatMichigan, 69-68, in theSweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament in Kansas City, Mo. on Thursday.The Ducks are the first team to advance to Elite Eight where theywill face the winner of Kansas-Purdue on Saturday night.
Tyler Dorsey led Oregon with20 points, whileJordan Bell notched a double-double with 16 points and 13 rebounds.
Derrick Walton Jr.led Michigan with 20 points.
Oregon and Michigan both had their doubters this season, and with good reason. Michigan had a mostly disappointing regular season; it finished eighth in the Big Ten and looked nothing like a team prepared to make a deep NCAA Tournament run.
Wolverines entered the game with theirconfidence at an all-time high after winning the Big Ten Tournament and following that up with a pair of nail-biting wins against Oklahoma State and Louisville in the NCAA Tournament. Many say theturning point was the team's plane accident prior to the Big Ten Tournament, but that's not entirely true; Michigan was beginning to turn its season around even before then.
Oregon, meanwhile, looked like a team more than ready to contend for a national championship untildynamic scorer and defenderChris Boucher wasruled out for the season with a torn ACL he suffered during the Pac-12 Tournament. Many fans who filled out brackets had the Ducks heading home early, butlike Michigan, Oregon ignored the noise and opened the NCAA Tournament with wins over Iona and Rhode Island.
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