Walton, Wagner Dominant in Senior Day Win Over No.14 Purdue

Feb. 25, 2017

What You Need to Know
» Michigan led throughout in claiming its second top-15 victory of the year.
» Derrick Walton Jr. logged a double-double with 17 points, 11 rebounds and five assists.
» Moritz Wagner had 22 first-half points, finishing with 24 total.

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Site: Ann Arbor, Mich. (Crisler Center)
Score: Michigan 82, #14 Purdue 70
Records: U-M (19-10, 9-7 Big Ten), Purdue (23-6, 13-3 Big Ten)
Next U-M Event: Wednesday, March 1 -- at Northwestern (Evanston, Ill.), 6 p.m. CST [ TV: BTN ]

• Kornacki Postgame Feature: How Michigan Beat Purdue with and without Wagner

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- The University of Michigan men's basketball team treated a sellout crowd to an emphatic display of basketball as the Wolverines took down 14th-ranked Purdue, 82-70, Saturday afternoon (Feb. 25) inside the Crisler Center.

Derrick Walton Jr. and Moritz Wagner dominated the opening 20 minutes of play with Walton answering several Purdue spurts in the second half as Michigan closed out its regular-season home schedule with an impressive 15-3 mark.

Michigan improves to 19-10 overall and 9-7 in the Big Ten while Purdue dips to 23-6 and 12-4.

Walton's leadership was on full display on Senior Day as the Detroit native logged a double-double with 17 points (6-12 FG) and a game-high 11 rebounds, while also adding five assists. Wagner's talents were only stalled by second half foul trouble as the 6-foot-10 German poured in 22 first-half points en route to a game-high 24 points in just 27 minutes.

Michigan threw the first punch midway through the first half with a torrid shooting streak that left Purdue reeling. With U-M leading 15-13, Wagner and Walton took over the scoring duties, combining for 21 straight points as the Wolverines built a 36-20 lead before Purdue finally ended the carnage with back-to-back baskets.

Wagner hit four times from beyond the arc while Walton connected on all three of his shots in the stretch. All told, Michigan connected on 14-of-20 (.700) from the floor to start the contest much to the delight of the sellout crowd.

Purdue stayed close but U-M was unrelenting as Duncan Robinson nailed a corner triple at the buzzer to give the Wolverines a 45-30 halftime lead. By the time the smoke had cleared, Michigan had made 19-of-29 overall (.655) including 7-of-13 from deep (.556). Wagner had 22 points in the opening stanza (9-12 FG, 4-6 3pt), while Walton had nine points (4-6 FG), four assists and seven vital rebounds.

Michigan was not crisp to start the second half, and the 15:48 mark became notable as Wagner went to the bench following his third foul. Purdue crept within 11 points on two occasions, including 53-42 at the 10:49 mark, only to have U-M rattle off 10 straight points for a 63-42 lead with 8:36 remaining, capped on a triple from D.J. Wilson (9 points).

After a pair of Xavier Simpson free throws gave U-M a 68-47 lead with under eight to play, Purdue once again got within 11 points, 68-57. A traditional three-point play from Walton gave U-M a 73-59 margin at the under-four media timeout but Purdue's Carsen Edwards hit a pair of triples. A U-M turnover then gave the Boilermakers an easy layup with the game suddenly close at 73-67 with 2:14 to play.

Walton stayed calm on the ensuing possession and drained an off-balance three-pointer with the shot clock at one. The bucket restored order at 76-67 with 1:42 left and Michigan effectively ran out the game from the free throw line.

Michigan shot 30-of-55 (.545) with 11 three-pointers and a perfect 11-for-11 mark from the free throw line (all in the second half). Robinson added 11 points (4-5 FG, 3-4 3-point), Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman had 10 points (3-4 FG, 4-4 FT) and three assists.

More importantly, Michigan committed just nine turnovers while forcing Purdue big man Caleb Swanigan into five turnovers himself on constant double teams. Swanigan logged nine points in each half of the game but was also limited to five rebounds. Carsen Edwards' 18 points (7-14 FG, 4-6 3-point) tied Swanigan for team high in points.

Michigan will close the regular season with another set of road games. U-M starts at Northwestern (Wednesday, March 1; BTN) and then plays the conference's final game at Nebraska (Sunday, March 5; BTN). Postseason will begin with the Big Ten Tournament (March 8-12). This year, the conference tournament will be played at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C.

Michigan is tracking a record pace 77.0 percent mark from the free throw line -- better than the 2013-14 squad's record of 76.2. The Wolverines continue to lead the Big Ten and are 15th nationally.
Michigan continues to lead the country with the fewest turnovers per game (9.5). U-M has had 10 or fewer turnovers in 21 games.

Communications Contact: Kurt Svoboda

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