ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- The University of Michigan men's basketball team suffered its first home loss of the season Tuesday night (Dec. 30), falling 61-60 to Boston University in front of 10,419 at Crisler Arena. In a tightly contested matchup, the Terriers (6-3) fought back from a seven-point deficit in the first half to go ahead by three points in the final two minutes. The Wolverines (8-2) had a chance to win the game with 2.0 seconds left, but sophomore Graham Brown's (Mio, Mich./Mio-AuSable HS) length-of-the-floor pass was intercepted by the defense and the clock ran out.
Mathis posted six points and six rebounds, helping U-M to a 42-30 edge on the boards.
The Wolverines jumped out to an early 4-0 lead with a putback from Sims and a Bernard Robinson Jr. (Washington, D.C./New Hampton Prep, N.H.) jumper from the wing. After the Terriers answered with four straight points of their own, Horton put home two consecutive triples to give Michigan a 10-4 advantage. Following a BU basket, Sims worked the ball down low and scored two more while being fouled. The ensuing free throw allowed U-M to take its largest lead of the half at seven points with 16:31 left.
The Terriers responded with a 21-7 run over the next 10 minutes, as two free throws from Chaz Carr gave Boston a 30-20 lead with 6:53 to play in the first half. The Wolverines would not falter, as Abram broke a four-minute scoring drought with a short jumper. On U-M's next trip down the floor, freshman Brent Petway (McDonough, Ga./Griffin HS) threw home a dunk after a nice pass through traffic from Robinson. Following a pair of BU free throws, senior/junior J.C. Mathis (Brooklyn, N.Y./John F. Kennedy HS) brought Michigan within three points, 32-29, with two straight buckets inside.
Coming out of the media timeout, Abram knocked home two from the stripe and followed with a steal and a slam to give the lead back to U-M, 33-32, with 2:37 left until the break. The Wolverines allowed only one more basket by BU before Abram hit his first triple and Sims hit a last-second turnaround in the lane to send Michigan to the locker room with a 38-34 lead.
Abram led U-M at halftime with 12 points, while Sims dropped in nine. Butt scored 10 points and pulled down four boards in the first half for Boston.
Boston opened the second half with two straight triples and a pair of free throws to grab back a 42-38 lead. A layup from Robinson and one-handed dunk by Brown tied the game at 42 apiece, but Matt Turner responded with his first triple to put BU ahead by three points. The teams traded baskets over the next few minutes, as Turner nailed another three and Horton hit two more triples to tie the game at 50-50 with just over 10 minutes remaining in the game.
A Sims free throw and another hoop from Mathis allowed the Wolverines to take a 53-50 lead, but BU battled back with an 8-0 run to go up 58-53 with 6:36 left to play. Abram halted the charge with a lefthanded runner in the lane and Horton nailed another deep three from the wing to tie the game at 58-58 with 4:20 remaining in the game.
The Terriers scored their final three points from the free throw line and took a 61-58 lead with 2:42 to play. Michigan climbed back to within one point thanks to a basket inside from Brown, and the Wolverines had an opportunity to take the lead in the final seconds, but a short jumper from Robinson fell just shy. A Michigan foul put BU on the line with 2.9 seconds to go, and a miss on the front end of a one-and-one gave the ball back to U-M with two seconds on the clock.
The Wolverines will travel to New York City for their first road game since Dec. 6 when the Maize and Blue takes on Fairfield at Madison Square Garden Saturday (Jan. 3) as part of the Dreyfus Big Saturday. Tipoff is scheduled for 4 p.m., but with two games prior to the Wolverines', tipoff could be delayed. Quinnipiac will face St. Francis (Pa.) at noon and Holy Cross will face Marist in the second game. Michigan-Fairfield is the third game, followed by the final game of St. John's against Niagara.
Contact: Tom Wywrot (734) 763-4423