ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- The University of Michigan men's basketball team snapped its three-game losing streak with a dramatic 61-60 come-from-behind win over No. 20/19 Notre Dame Saturday (Dec. 4) in front of 12,563 fans at Crisler Arena. In a game in which Notre Dame led for entire second half, the Wolverines found themselves down 10 points with 11:30 left, but chipped away at the lead throughout the final 10 minutes. Closing it within two points with 30 second remaining, a steal by freshman Ron Coleman (Romulus, Mich./Romulus HS), led to a fastbreak driving layup by junior Daniel Horton (Cedar Hill, Texas/Cedar Hill HS), who was fouled as the layup fell tying the score at 60-60.
Horton's steal, layup and free throw with 20.7 seconds left completed the comeback.
Following the made free throw the Wolverines reclaimed the lead for the first time in the second half with 20.7 second to go. With time ticking down Notre Dame's Chris Thomas drove down the floor, but missed his jumper that was rebounded by sophomore Brent Petway (McDonough, Ga./Griffin HS)
, who was then sent to the free throw line after an Irish foul. After missing the front end of a one-and-one, Thomas again raced up the court, but his last second shot was blocked by Petway sealing the victory for the Wolverines.
After going 0-for-1 and sitting most of the first half with two fouls, Horton exploded in the second stanza leading the Wolverines with 15 points. He also had three rebounds, an assist and a steal after playing all 20 minutes of the second half giving him 28 minutes for the game.
Coleman also helped pace the way for the Wolverines on the perimeter as he scored a career-high 11 points on 4-for-5 shooting. Sophomore Dion Harris (Detroit, Mich./Redford HS) gave the Wolverines three players in double figures as he finished the game with 10 points. Junior Graham Brown (Mio, Mich./Mio-AuSable HS) helped the frontcourt play as he finished with eight points, eight rebounds, two assists and a steal in 26 minutes and Petway finished with four points, eight rebounds and three blocked shots.
To open the game, Michigan got on the board first with a Brown putback lay-up, which was quickly answered by Notre Dame's Torin Francis. After a series of possessions, the Wolverines entered the game's first time out in a 6-6 tie with 14:24 left in the first half. Brown and Francis led their respective teams with four points a piece.
Out of the timeout, Harris connected on a three-pointer to put U-M ahead 9-6, but the lead was short lived as Notre Dame's Collin Falls hit a three of his own to bring the game to a 9-9 standstill. After a junior Chris Hunter's (Gary, Ind./West Side HS) free throw put the Wolverines up by one, Petway stole the ball on the defense end and streaked down the court for a two-handed stuff making the score 12-9 with 11:55 left. Sophomore John Andrews (West Bloomfield, Mich./Orchard Lake St. Mary's), who started his second straight game, extended the lead to five with a reverse lay-up. The Wolverines continued to push with a Harris jumper extending the lead to 18-9 with 7:34 remaining.
Notre Dame was able to end their six minute scoring drought with a Jordan Cornette layup. But the Wolverines kept cooking as a string of baskets ensued, with Coleman leading the way for Michigan with a career high 10 points in the first half. Following a Coleman's second three-pointer of the half, the Wolverines went up 30-21 with 2:14 left. The Irish mounted a furious 9-0 comeback as the half wound down. The half ended in a 30-30 tie after Thomas closed out the Irish run with a steal and a layup as time expired.
Out of half, Notre Dame came on strong producing a 10 point lead, 51-41, with 11:30 left. Leading the way for the Irish was Torin Francis who had six points during the run, to go along with two three-point field goals by Falls.
Michigan ended its four-minute scoreless streak on a Horton floater in the lane, cutting the Notre Dame lead to eight. Harris followed with a jumper and another Petway dunk brought the Irish lead to 47-51 with 8:35 remaining. A Brown hook-shot in the lane capped an 8-0 run, a brought the Wolverines to within two.
Notre Dame's Dennis Latimore ended the Irish's four-minute drought, but Horton answered once again with another field goal, keeping Michigan within two, at 53-51, with 5:44 left in the game. After a Notre Dame basket, Coleman was fouled on a baseline shot and had the opportunity to bring Michigan to within one. After missing his first free throw, he drained the second to make it a two-point game.
Horton closed out Michigan's comeback victory, scoring nine of Michigan's last 10 points, including the game winning lay-up and foul, to cap off the thrilling come-from-behind victory.
The Wolverines will play their second of four straight home games against High Point (Dec. 7), at Crisler Arena. Tip off is scheduled for 7 p.m.
Contact: Tom Wywrot (734) 763-4423