The 69-57 win wasn't easy, though. Matthews, the Kentucky transfer and Chicago native, had a run-out dunk with 1:33 left that made it 63-53. Additionally, the entire team with the exception of Wagner could have played better in the first half when Loyola-Chicago hung around during a slow start and ultimately entered halftime with a 7-point advantage.
When the 6-foot-11, multifaceted German import Moritz Wagner took the ball reasonably close to the basket with seven minutes left, then backed up into 3-point range on the right, then drained the shot that tied the score at last at 47-47, he had just made Michigan's 19th field goal in 51 tries. While it plucked turnovers repeatedly through the key stretch, it ensured that Loyola Chicago's textbook passing kept amounting to nothing. But facing one of the best defensive teams in the country, the best defensive team Beilein has ever had in 11 seasons in Ann Arbor, the Ramblers scored just 16 points in the final 14 minutes.
Loyola coach Porter Moster had the same message to his team during its run through the NCAA Tournament. They had made two shots out of 10, had seen three layups in traffic roll off the rim and had six rebounds to Michigan's gathering collection of 12.
"I don't know if they had magic on their side", Beilein said. Simpson had no points and four turnovers. "So not dropping our heads was one of the main adjustments we had to make".
It became MI, the No. 3 seed that brought to the Alamodome its 13-game winning streak, which finally would see off a Ramblers team, its oft-gorgeous offense and its rock-star 98-year-old chaplain, Sister Jean Dolores Schmidt.
Sister Jean watched that big game on tape delay back home on an 11-inch, black-and-white television.
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Loyola turned it over on three straight possessions and Wagner tipped in a miss by Poole, was fouled and converted the 3-point play to put MI up 54-47 with just under five minutes left.
For anyone who didn't really have a proverbial dog in the the fight, the Loyola Ramblers became his or her favorite basketball team for Final Four weekend.
"(The problem) was rebounding", Loyola guard Donte Ingram said. "Despite going out this way, were going to never forget this. I don't think it was any one thing".
MI has more work to do. Duke was trying to get to the Final Four for the first time since it won the national championship in 2015.
"She's become a huge celebrity, and she's a great part of this team", Krutwig said.
Meanwhile, the Jayhawks rank in the top five nationally in offensive efficiency and shoots above 40 percent from deep. "Now we're playing on Monday night".