Michigan will have little time to regroup from its tough Thursday night defeat in Bloomington as the Wolverines welcome Wisconsin to Ann Arbor in a nationally televised affair. Wisconsin enters the game reeling after suffering a pair of home losses, to Iowa and Michigan State. For Michigan, it’s a chance to avenge last year’s buzzer-beating loss and to earn its first win over Wisconsin since John Beilein took over the program in 2008.
1. McLimans, Douglass trim 12-point deficit to five late in first half
In the first half, Michigan trailed by as many as 15 points and was on the ropes early. Indiana was just a couple plays away from opening up a blowout. The Wolverines were in desperate need of a run to get some type of momentum heading into the break. Blake McLimans and Stu Douglass provided just that as unlikely heroes off the bench. With 3:38 to go in the first, Trey Burke found McLimans open in the corner for three and he drained it, cutting the lead back to single digits. McLimans was maligned as a three point shooting big that couldn’t shoot last year but he’s stepped up and hit big threes in difficult spots this year, now three-of-four for the year. Two possessions later, Douglass got hot. Off a dish from Hardaway, Douglass hit a bomb from three-point range. Then he did it again on Michigan’s next possession, this time from the left corner off a pass from Burke. On both shots, Douglass set his feet and gathered himself before he let it fly — which seems to be the difference between Douglass’s made three-pointers and his misses. In a span of one minute and 18 seconds, Douglass and McLimans cut the Hoosier lead from 12 to five points to help Michigan claw back into the game. [click to continue…]
There are no moral victories in a league where every game seems to boils down to a one or two possession battle. Games are opportunities and losses are missed opportunities. Michigan let a golden chance for a coveted road victory slip away at Assembly Hall on Thursday night. The Wolverines never led but had four shots and a desperation heave to tie or take the lead in the final three minutes of play. Those shots all rimmed out and Michigan’s last gasp effort fell short. The Wolverines missed out on their third win at Assembly Hall in almost a quarter-century and Indiana escaped with a 73-71 victory.