The Minnesota Golden Gophers will continue their nice run in the National Invitational Tournament, advancing to the semifinals by knocking off No. 4 Middle Tennessee on Wednesday night, 78-72. Minnesota will now play No. 1 Washington next Tuesday at Madison Square Garden in New York.
Minnesota trailed the Blue Raiders at the half by four, 32-28, but made their first five shots in the second half en route to taking complete control of the game. An 11-4 run in the middle of the half and another quiet 10-4 allowed the Golden Gophers to build a lead that the Blue Raiders were unable to overcome in the final minutes, despite a nice little run at the end.
Middle Tennessee trailed by two with seven seconds remaining and was whistled for a tech because the defender on the indbounds crossed the boundary and made contact with the passer. Minnesota hit both of their free throws there and the subsequent two to complete the six-point win.
Rodney Williams was the game's leading scorer with 24 points on 8-for-11 shooting.
Tip next Tuesday is at 9 p.m. and will be aired again on ESPN2.