Michigan Drops Low-Scoring Affair to No. 9 Spartans
Site: Ann Arbor, Mich. (Crisler Arena)
Score: #9 Michigan State 54, Michigan 42
Records: U-M (15-10, 5-7 Big Ten), Michigan State (20-4, 10-2 Big Ten)
Next U-M Event: Sunday, Feb. 15 -- at Northwestern (Welsh-Ryan Arena), 2 p.m. CST

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ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- The University of Michigan men's basketball team cut a 12-point second-half deficit to four points, 42-38, with five minutes left to play, but the Michigan State Spartans converted down the stretch to claim the victory in the in-state rivalry, 54-42, on Tuesday night (Feb. 10) at Crisler Arena. U-M recovered from a season-low 15 points in the first half, but the late surge was not enough to erase the halftime disparity.

Junior forward DeShawn Sims(Detroit, Mich./Detroit Pershing HS) netted 12 points during the second-half effort to bring his game-best total to 18, while sophomore Manny Harris(Detroit, Mich./Redford HS) registered seven points and a team-high seven rebounds.

After MSU expanded its advantage to 12 points, 31-19, in the second half, freshman guard Zack Novak (Chesterton, Ind./Chesterton HS) drained a long-range jumper and found Sims inside the paint on three consecutive drives to bring the Wolverines back within eight, 36-28. The 6-8, 235-pound forward accounted for 10 of Michigan's first 13 points to open the second stanza.

Continuing to chisel away the Spartan advantage, Harris fed senior/junior forward Zack Gibson(Grand Blanc, Mich./Grand Blanc HS) as he streaked down the lane and elevated, rattling the rim for a two-handed jam and a trip to the charity stripe. Gibson converted the old-fashioned three-point play to trim the lead to four, 42-38, with 4:48 left and closed the competition amassing six points, two rebounds and one block.

U-M continued to press MSU in the waning minutes, but the Maize and Blue could not diminish the Spartan lead to less than four points for the remainder of the contest. The Wolverines, who entered the game converting 30.7 percent from behind the arc, drained only 4-of-24 (16.7 pct.) shots from downtown during the loss.

Michigan State tallied the game's first five points, but Michigan battled back to establish its first lead of the contest, 8-7. The Wolverines held the lead momentarily until the Spartans responded with a 12-5 surge to reclaim the upper hand, 19-13. MSU forced U-M into low-percentage shots late in the shot clock and received six points from freshman forward Delvon Roe to obtain the six-point lead with 7:49 remaining in the first half.

The Wolverines held the Spartans scoreless for nearly seven minutes, but the home squad could only muster one field goal for the remainder of the first stanza, allowing the deficit to increase to eight points before the intermission, 23-15. Sims totaled a team-best six points off of the bench and added one steal and one offensive rebound during the opening 20 minutes.

Michigan continues Big Ten conference play on Sunday (Feb. 15) at Northwestern at Welsh-Ryan Arena in Evanston, Ill. Tipoff is scheduled for 2 p.m. CST and the contest will be aired live on the Big Ten Network.

Contact: Tom Wywrot (734) 763-4423

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