DeShawn Sims (AP Photo/Tom Olmscheid)
Feb. 11, 2010
Site: Minneapolis, Minn. (Williams Arena)
Score: Michigan 71, Minnesota 63
Records: U-M (12-12, 5-7 Big Ten), Minnesota (14-9, 5-6 Big Ten)
Next U-M Event: Tuesday, Feb. 16 -- at Iowa (Iowa City, Iowa), 8:05 p.m. CST (TV: Big Ten Network)
MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. -- The "Motor City Duo" of senior DeShawn Sims (Detroit, Mich./Pershing) and junior Manny Harris (Detroit, Mich./Redford) combined for 47 points to help the University of Michigan men's basketball team earn a much-needed road win, defeating Minnesota, 71-63, on Thursday night (Feb. 11) at Williams Arena. As a team, Michigan shot 68 percent in the second half and committed only two turnovers.
Sims was a one-man wrecking crew as the senior finished with 27 points, with 21 coming in the second half, two shy of his career high and one off his season high. He also led the team with seven rebounds. Harris netted 20 points (5-for-14 FG; 8-for-10 FT) and dished out seven assists. With the victory, Michigan has defeated Minnesota (14-9, 5-6 Big Ten) in seven of the last 10 meetings, including the last two at Williams Arena.
Michigan came out of the gates hot, taking an early 15-8 lead at the 12-minute media timeout. The Wolverines made three of their first five three-point attempts, including one from senior Zack Gibson (Grand Blanc, Mich./Grand Blanc), which was his first make (and attempt) in conference play and third on the season. He added another in the second half and finished with eight points.
Minnesota rebounded, however, going on a 13-6 mini run to tie the game at 21-all. However, a possible turning point in the game came with three seconds remaining in the first half and Michigan trailing 26-25. Harris took the inbounds pass three-quarters of the court all the way to the hoop and got fouled as time expired. He converted on both free throws to put Michigan ahead at the break, 27-26. U-M did not trail again for the remainder of the game.
Minnesota began the second half implementing its fullcourt zone pressure, but freshman Darius Morris (Los Angeles, Calif./Windward) showed no problems breaking it. The Wolverines' first three buckets of the second half were all layups and Morris looked like he would make it four but instead pulled up short and hit turnaround jumper to extend Michigan's lead to 36-33 inside the 15-minute mark. In his second straight start (11th overall), Morris finished with five points, five assists, three rebounds and also took a couple charges on the defensive end.
Every time Minnesota attempted to go on a run, Michigan responded. The Golden Gophers tried switching defenses again, this time going to a 3-2 zone, but a deep three-pointer from Harris brought the lead back to nine, 55-46. On the next two possessions, Harris and Sims ran a two-man game, leading to a pair of easy layins. Again, the Gophers tried to make a run and again they were sent back. Down the stretch in the second half, U-M successfully converted on 9-of-12 possessions to keep its lead at a comfortable margin over the home team, never allowing Minnesota to gain any ground.
Down six with less than a minute to play, Minnesota charged up the floor, but Devoe Joseph lost the handle, and the ball fell right into the active hands of sophomore Stu Douglass (Carmel, Ind./Carmel) for his fifth steal of the game. Douglass quickly dished it to Morris, who was inadvertently intentionally fouled, earning him two trips to the foul line and possession, sealing the win for the Wolverines.
Michigan seemed to solve its three-point shooting woes, converting at a clip of 50 percent (7-for-14). The Wolverines had 20 assists on 26 made field goals and only turned the ball over eight times. On the defensive side, Michigan forced Minnesota into 15 turnovers and came up with 11 steals, its highest total since the Jan. 17 win over Connecticut.
Michigan is back in action this Tuesday (Feb. 16), when it faces Iowa in Iowa City, Iowa. Tipoff is set for 8:05 p.m. CST, with the game being televised on the Big Ten Network.
Contact: Tom Wywrot (734) 763-4423