Nov. 23, 2012
Site: New York, N.Y. (Madison Square Garden)
Event: NIT Season Tip-Off (Championship)
Score: #4 Michigan 71, Kansas State 57
Records: U-M (5-0), KSU (5-1)
Next U-M Event: Tuesday, Nov. 27 -- vs. North Carolina State, Big Ten/ACC Challenge (Crisler Center), 7:30 p.m. (TV: ESPN)
NEW YORK, N.Y. -- A 23-point performance by junior guard and tournament MVP Tim Hardaway Jr. (Miami, Fla./Palmetto Senior) helped lead the University of Michigan men's basketball team (No. 4 AP, No. 4 ESPN/USA Today) to its first NIT Season Tip-Off championship with a 71-57 win over Kansas State today (Friday, Nov. 23) at Madison Square Garden.
Sophomore guard Trey Burke (Columbus, Ohio/Northland), who joined Hardaway on the all-tournament team, scored all 10 of his points in the second half. Hardaway finished the two-game championship round with 39 points, while Burke tallied 27 points in New York.
The Wolverines shot 29-for-56 (51.8 percent) from the floor, including 18-for-33 (54.5 percent) in the second half.
After holding a 29-24 advantage at the break, Michigan opened the second half with a 14-2 run to increase its lead to 16, 43-27, at the 14:43 mark. Another 6-0 run for the Wolverines pushed the lead to 19, 49-30, as Kansas State called its third timeout of the half with 11:35 to play.
A 5-0 run by Kansas State was stymied by three-pointers from Stauskas and Hardaway, as U-M led by 18, 63-45, with six minutes left.
Kansas State then went on a 9-5 run, led by five straight points from D.J. Johnson and four consecutive from Rodney McGruder, but the Wolverines held off the Wildcats' comeback effort, and a pair of free throw from freshman guard Nik Stauskas (Mississauga, Ontario, Canada/St. Mark's School [Mass.]) produced the final score of 71-57.
After nearly three minutes of empty possessions to start the game, Hardaway scored the championship game's first bucket with a 13-foot right side jumper. U-M built a 6-0 lead before Kansas State got on the board, cutting the lead in half, 6-3, with a Will Spradling three-pointer off transition. U-M answered as a Hardaway jumper and five straight points from Stauskas extended U-M's lead to 13-5.
U-M kept a steady rotation of players throughout the first half as 11 Wolverines saw action to keep Kansas State off rhythm. Hardaway, who closed the half with 12 points, continued to produce as his two layups and an inside bucket from freshman forward Mitch McGary (Chesterton, Ind./Brewster Academy [N.H.]) helped U-M maintain an eight-point advantage, 21-13, with less than eight minutes to go in the half.
With senior/junior forward Jordan Morgan (Detroit, Mich./University of Detroit Jesuit) and Burke on the bench with two fouls each, Kansas State cut the lead to two, 22-20, as Jordan Henriquez (four points) and Angel Rodriguez (three) combined for a 7-1 run. However, a pair of free throws from freshman forward Glenn Robinson III (St. John, Ind./Lake Central) and another layup from Hardaway, U-M pushed its lead to six, 26-20, with under four minutes to play. With solid back-and-forth play from both teams carrying the tempo during the final four minutes, U-M closed the half with a five-point lead, 29-24.
The Wolverines head back to Ann Arbor to host their 2012 Big Ten/ACC Challenge match-up against North Carolina State (No. 16 AP, No. 15 ESPN/USA Today) on Tuesday (Nov. 27) at 7:30 p.m. at Crisler Center. The game will be televised on ESPN, and U-M's 2011-12 Big Ten regular-season championship banner will be unveiled in a pregame ceremony.
Contact: Tom Wywrot, Whitney Dixon (734) 763-4423