Offensive Spurts Key Michigan to Victory at Illinois State
Sam Arnold

Dec. 5, 2012

Box Score | Notes | Highlights
Inside Michigan Women's Basketball

Site: Normal, Ill. (Redbird Arena)
Score: Michigan 56, Illinois State 45
Records: U-M (7-2), ISU (4-3)
Next U-M Event: Tuesday, Dec. 11 -- at Eastern Michigan (Ypsilanti, Mich.), 7 p.m.

NORMAL, Ill. -- The University of Michigan women's basketball team used a 14-0 run in the first half and a 9-0 run in the second to record a 56-45 win at Illinois State on Wednesday night (Dec. 5) at Redbird Arena.

Senior guard Kate Thompson (Plymouth, Minn./Wayzata) paced the Wolverine offense with 18 points on 7-for-14 shooting, hitting four three-pointers. She was joined in double-figure scoring by senior forward Rachel Sheffer (Watervliet, Mich./Watervliet), who went for 10 points, and senior guard Jenny Ryan (Saginaw, Mich./Saginaw Nouvel Catholic Central), who scored 12 points with seven rebounds and five assists.

Michigan won the battle of the boards, 42-24, with sophomore guard Nicole Elmblad (St. Ignace, Mich./LaSalle) grabbing a career-best 10. Senior forward Sam Arnold (Medinah, Ill./Lake Park) scored a season-high seven points off the bench, also recording five rebounds in her return to her home state.

Turnovers plagued the Wolverines in the early going, as Michigan committed five turnovers before finally breaking through on the scoreboard off a trey from freshman guard Madison Ristovski (Sterling Heights, Mich./University Liggett) with 16:29 to go in the first. Michigan fell behind 9-4 before going on a 14-0 run over a 3:26 span. Arnold just beat the shot clock with a 17-foot elbow jumper to ignite the run with 13:02 to go in the first, capped by a Thompson trey at the 9:36 mark to give U-M a 19-9 lead.

The Wolverines managed only four more points the rest of the half -- on a pair of Sheffer layups -- going the final 5:19 of the half without scoring to take a two-point (23-21) lead into halftime. The Wolverines shot 37.5 percent (9-for-24) in the first half, hitting 50 percent (4-for-8) from beyond the arc. Michigan committed 11 turnovers in the first half, leading to 13 Illinois State points.

The Redbirds responded out of the break with an 8-2 run, grabbing a 29-25 lead, before Michigan answered with a nine-point spurt of its own for a 34-29 lead. A pair of free throws from senior forward Nya Jordan (Detroit, Mich./Detroit Community), a three from Thompson and back-to-back layups by Sheffer contributed the Michigan scoring run.

U-M continued its run over the next 10 minutes, outscoring the Redbirds 24-10 for a 10-point lead, 49-39, with 6:40 to go, finalized by a Thompson jumper.

With the Wolverines holding a seven-point lead after an Illinois State trey with 6:15 to go, neither team scored for nearly four minutes. Ryan broke the scoreless streak, splitting two defenders for driving layup off the glass with 2:07 remaining to put Michigan on top, 51-42.

The Redbirds were forced to foul the rest of the way, with Michigan hitting 5-of-8 from the charity stripe to seal the 11-point win.

Michigan will wrap up its two-game road swing on Tuesday (Dec. 11) at Eastern Michigan. The teams will square off at 7 p.m.

Contact: Sarah VanMetre (734) 763-4423

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