Site: Toronto, Ontario (Humber College Athletic Centre)
Score: Michigan 100, G.T. Express 74
Next U-M Game: Saturday, Oct. 25 -- Maize and Blue Intrasquad (Crisler Arena), Time TBA
TORONTO, Ontario -- Sophomore Daniel Horton (Cedar Hills, Texas/Cedar Hill HS) got hot early and often as he exploded for 29 points in the University of Michigan men's basketball team's 100-74 win over G.T. Express Monday (Oct. 13) at Humber College's Athletic Centre. With the victory, the Wolverines closed out their three-day Canadian exhibition tour with a perfect 3-0 record.
Horton's all-around effort included five three-pointers.
Sophomore Lester Abram (Pontiac, Mich./Northern HS) finished with 10 points and led the Maize and Blue with seven rebounds, while sophomore Graham Brown (Mio, Mich./Mio-AuSable HS) also had 10 points, going 5-for-7 from the field. Freshman Brent Petway (McDonough, Ga./GriffinHS), who started the game, also had a solid game, going 4-for-4 from the field with three crowd-raising dunks. He also had five rebounds and two blocks.
As in the two previous exhibition games, the Wolverines got off to a fast start, as Petway highlighted the early going with a pair of dunks, giving the Wolverines an early 4-0 lead. G.T. Express held some ground early by getting some second-chance buckets, but Horton was too hot as he scored 12 of the first 25 U-M points and gave the Wolverines a 25-11 lead just eight minutes into the game. Another Petway dunk followed by two triples from Sims and the Wolverines pushed their lead to 37-16. As the lead grew, the Wolverines continued to work on their pressure defense and traps, continuing to throw G.T. Express off balance. Horton then hit his third and fourth threes of the half, pushing U-M's lead to 49-21 with just 3:48 remaining. Horton continued his first-half dominance as he sank two free throws and his fifth triple of the game to help the Wolverines go into halftime with a 57-32 lead.
The second half was a change of gears for the Wolverines, as they scored on their first five possessions from the post, including four buckets from Brown. But G.T. Express would not go down without a fight as it scored 12 points to cut into U-M's lead, 67-44 with 15:56 to go. A Maize and Blue 20-8 run pushed the lead back to 30 points, 86-56, with 6:15 remaining. After the media timeout, Michigan coach Tommy Amaker was able to get all 14 players in for the third straight game as junior/sophomore Dani Wohl (West Bloomfield, Mich./West BloomfieldHS), senior Colin Dill (Saginaw, Mich./Birmingham Country Day), sophomore Sherrod Harrell (Kalamazoo, Mich./Central HS), sophomore/freshman Amadou Ba (Mauritania, Africa/Bridgton Academy, Maine) and freshman John Andrews (West Bloomfield, Mich./Orchard Lake St. Mary's HS) closed out the game for the Wolverines.
Four of the five second-team Wolverines put points on the board, and Dill followed with a putback off an Andrews miss to help the Wolverines hit the century mark, as they closed out the game with a 100-74 win.
Michigan's next game action will be Saturday, Oct. 25, at Crisler Arena, when the Wolverines hold their annual Maize and Blue Scrimmage and fan day. The time for the scrimmage is still to be determined, with the Michigan-Purdue football game beginning at 3:30 p.m.
Q U O T E S
U-M Head Coach Tommy Amaker
On the three-game tour of Canada ... "It is early, but it has given us a little bit of a snapshot of, hopefully, things to come for our team. I think we have recognized that we are much deeper, especially in the post area. I really love our depth, our athleticism our length. I think we have a chance to do a lot of really good things if our defense is going to be as aggressive as we have showed during the past three days."
On the defensive focus during the three games ... "I think our defense is going to be key for us all year. The kind of program we want to be is going to be up-tempo, fast-breaking type of team. In order to do that you need to start things on the defensive end, creating turnovers and getting easy baskets. I am anxious to see if we can sustain that, but I like the start that we have had. I like the foundation. I like the pieces to the puzzle that we can possibly put in there. Now we need to grow, learn from this weekend and continue to develop it. Right now, I am just encouraged by what we have seen."
On where the Wolverines go from here ... "We need to get better in all phases. We need to get back to fundamental work. We have done so much to prepare for games, that sometimes you look at the whole method a little more than breaking down stuff. So we need to regroup and break down the things we were able to do well here and just try to continue to improve."
Senior Bernard Robinson Jr.
On the weekend tour of Canada ... "I think we played very well for our first three games. We had some pretty good competition, but I think we really showed we are heading in the right direction. I know I am happy with the results, but I know we still have to get better."
On the Wolverines' defensive pressure ... "I think we still have a lot of improving to do, but I think we had some really good pressure during all three games. The pressure we can put on really helps in getting the other team to get off balance and helps get them out of their game. We showed some of that this weekend and that helps us, but again, we still have some improvements to make."
Sophomore Daniel Horton
On the Toronto trip ... "I think we a got a lot out of the three games we played. They were all really good for us at this point in the season. We had our moments where we lost some concentration when we had the big leads, but we all played together and played well in stretches. There are still a lot of things we need to work on, but we have a lot of time to do that."
On the Wolverines' defensive pressure ... "I think that was a big focus this weekend. Everything for us starts on the defensive end. Getting a steal, clogging the lanes, putting the pressure on, giving a team only one shot is what we want to do."
On the next month for the Wolverines ... "We have to get back to the fundamentals. We need to work on a lot of the little things in order to get better. Again, this was a good test for us this weekend, but we need to go back to practice and work hard to get better and clean up some of the errors we had this weekend."
Freshman Dion Harris
On his first taste of college basketball ... "I was nervous at first, but due to us playing well together it just was a good experience. I am kind of sore today after playing three games in three days, but that's college basketball."
On thoughts of the Wolverines play this weekend ... "It went well, mainly because we played well. I think we still need to do some improving, but we did improve with each game this weekend. Today I think it all came together a little better, especially on the defensive end. Mainly we need to concentrate and continue putting the offensive and defensive game together consistently and we will be a good team."
N O T E S
Michigan's starters were:
-- Game 1 vs. G.T. Express (Oct. 11) -- Daniel Horton, Lester Abram, Bernard Robinson Jr., Graham Brown and Chris Hunter
-- Game 2 vs. University of Guelph (Oct. 12) -- Daniel Horton, Lester Abram Dion Harris, J.C. Mathis and Courtney Sims
-- Game 3 vs. G.T. Express (Oct. 13) -- Daniel Horton, Dion Harris, Bernard Robinson Jr., Brent Petway and Graham Brown
Michigan, which was 3-0 during the exhibition tour, won by an average margin of 35.0 points per game.
Michigan's highest point output was 100 points in the second game against G.T. Express (Oct. 13), winning 100-74. The Wolverines scored 95 in the first game against G.T. Express (Oct. 11) and 88 against the University of Guelph (Oct. 12).
Michigan had at least three players score in double figures in each exhibition game, with the high of five coming in the first game against G.T. Express (Oct. 11) -- Lester Abram (15), Brent Petway (14), Dion Harris (13), J.C. Mathis (12) and Bernard Robinson Jr. (11).
Michigan shot 61.1 percent (37-for-59) in the second game against G.T. Express (Oct. 13). The Wolverines shot 57.1 percent (40-for-70) in the first game against G.T. Express (Oct. 11) and 54.8 percent (34-for-62) against the University of Guelph (Oct. 12).
Daniel Horton had the highest scoring output for the Wolverines with his 29 points in the second game against G.T. Express (Oct. 13). He went 9-for-12 from the field, including 5-for-7 from the three-point line. Dion Harris had the second highest with a 20-point showing against the University of Guelph. He went 8-for-10 from the field, including 4-for-5 from long range.
Michigan had an exhibition-high 47 rebounds against the University of Guelph (Oct. 12). The Wolverines had 44 in the first game against G.T. Express (Oct. 11) and 41 in the second game (Oct. 13).
Graham Brown had the highest rebounding output for the Wolverines with 11 in the first game against G.T. Express (Oct. 11). Lester Abram had the second best with his seven in the second game against G.T. Express (Oct. 13).
Michigan had an exhibition-high 25 assists in the first game against G.T. Express (Oct. 11). The Wolverines had 18 in the second game against G.T. Express (Oct. 13) and 16 against the University of Guelph (Oct. 12).
Contact: Tom Wywrot (734) 763-4423