Score: Michigan 89, Oakland 76
Records: U-M (8-2), Oakland (7-6)
Next U-M Event: Monday, Dec. 22 -- vs. Florida Gulf Coast (Crisler Arena), 7 p.m.
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AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- The University of Michigan men's basketball team picked up its eighth win of the season Saturday afternoon (Dec. 20), defeating Oakland, 89-76, at The Palace of Auburn Hills. Junior forward DeShawn Sims(Detroit, Mich./Detroit Pershing HS) led the way for the Wolverines with 20 points and a team-best nine rebounds, while sophomore guard Manny Harris(Detroit, Mich./Detroit Redford) added 15 points and a career-best 13 assists, one shy of tying the school record of 14 helpers. Meanwhile, sophomore/freshman guard Laval Lucas-Perry(Flint, Mich./Powers Catholic HS) made his Maize and Blue debut count, scoring 14 points off the bench.
The Wolverines started red hot from the field, making their first four shots on the contest, all from beyond the arc. Freshman guard Stu Douglass(Carmel, Ind./Carmel HS), who finished with 12 points, buried the first trio of trifectas for the Maize and Blue and fifth-year senior guard David Merritt(West Bloomfield, Mich./West Bloomfield HS) hit the final triple of the long-range quartet as U-M took an early 12-7 lead.
A 13-0 run by the Wolverines forced an Oakland timeout with 9:07 left in the half. Lucas-Perry connected on his first two shots, both three-pointers during the run. Following the timeout, U-M extended the run to 18-0 with a Sims put back and another Lucas-Perry trifecta, giving the Wolverines a 32-15 lead.
Oakland cut the Michigan lead to 42-34 at the break with a 14-5 run to end the half. Lucas-Perry led all scorers with 12 in the first 20 minutes. Michigan had assists on 13 of its 15 field goals in the opening stanza and shot 10-of-18 (55.6 percent) from three-point range in the half. Harris had eight assists for the Maize and Blue in the first half.
Michigan pushed its lead back out to double digits, 54-41, at the first media timeout of the second half. Sims scored six of the first 10 points for the Wolverines coming out of the break.
The Golden Grizzles trimmed the U-M lead to four, 69-65, with 6:08 remaining, but the Wolverines responded with a 10-3 run. Harris started the run with a bucket, senior/junior forward Zack Gibson(Grand Blanc, Mich./Grand Blanc HS) followed with a pair of free throws and freshman guard Zack Novak(Chesterton, Ind./Chesterton HS) and sophomore guard Kelvin Grady(Grand Rapids, Mich./East Grand Rapids HS) each hit a triple to cap the run and force an Oakland timeout.
The Wolverines finished the game with 24 assists on 30 field goals and only committed five turnovers. Gibson added six points, four rebounds, a career-high-tying three blocks and a career-best three assists.
Michigan will return to action on Monday (Dec. 22) when it hosts Florida Gulf Coast at Crisler Arena. Game time is scheduled for 7 p.m. and will be available on video stream on BigTenNetwork.com.
Contact: Tom Wywrot (734) 763-4423