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Michigan, Purdue surge into Big Ten title game

05 March, 2018, 00:45 | Author: Sylvester Abbott
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Third-seeded MI ended the regular season on a run of 10-3-1, and both Penn State and Minnesota will approach the NCAA selection show with winning records.

Senior guard Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman and sophomore guard Zavier Simpson also scored 15 points as the fifth-seeded Wolverines (27-7) won their eighth consecutive game.

"Robert and Louis just started off so slow in the first half, that in the second half they wanted to show what kind of players they are", MI interim coach Brian Ellerbe said.

Miles Bridges led the No. 2-ranked Spartans (29-4), who had won 13 in a row, with 17 points. Jaren Jackson Jr. added 13 and Cassius Winston had 11, but the Spartans only crossed into double figures with the MI band revving the Maize and Blue faithful at Madison Square Garden with yet another version of "Hail To The Victors". "We have NCAA Tournament talent". There were two scrums after hard fouls, a technical foul was called against the Spartans' forward Nick Ward and referee Gene Steratore - yeah, the guy who ran the Super Bowl - lectured both Tom Izzo of Michigan State and John Beilein of Michigan after the nonsense.

"I think it just opens up the floor", Mathias said. The Spartans opened the second half 3 of 13 from the floor, and after a Abdur-Rahkman triple with 11:51 to go, it was MI in front, 42-37.

Wagner had three baskets and a free throw, with a drive to the hoop seemingly getting him going.

Junior guard Matt McQuaid hit two 3-pointers within the last four minutes of Saturday's contest. Notre Dame, Ohio State, Minnesota, Michigan, and Penn State are essentially tournament locks through the first round of conference postseason series. First it was Nebraska in the quarterfinals, then most recently top-seeded Michigan State.

Michigan State (12-21-2), the 7th seed, and Ohio State (22-8-5), the No. 2 seed, meet in Game 2 at 7 p.m. Saturday.

Mo Wagner scored 14 of his 15 points after a terrible first half and fifth-seeded Michigan moved within a game of its second straight Big Ten Tournament title with a 75-64 victory over top-seeded Michigan State on Saturday, ending the No. 2 ranked Spartans' winning streak at 13 games. Purdue vs MI tv channel schedule is on CBS.

Jordan Bowden hit a pair of free throws to give Tennessee a one-point lead with one minute left, and Schofield hit a turnaround jumper on the Vols' next possession to help seal the win.

The Spartans were done in by the Wolverines, 75-64, in a Big Ten tournament semifinal on Saturday.

"We had one guy working and four guys watching, and we were that way offensively and defensively".

Flaherty hit three 3s and Thome scored six points in a 17-5 run that made it 32-17 with a minute left in the first half and the Wolverines led by double figures the rest of the way.

The second half started with MI finding more rhythm, though, as Wagner got involved by attacking the basket and scoring seven of U-M's nine points in a 9-0 run to reclaim the lead. As a team, Purdue is scoring 81.7 points per game on 49.8% shooting from the field, 42.1% from behind the arc which is the 3rd-best 3-point percentage in D-I and 74.6% from the foul line this season. The sophomore faced an array of defenders, including Vincent Edwards, Nojel Eastern and P.J. Thompson.

"I think the Big Ten has finally got to the point where we thought it would be when it started", MI coach Mel Pearson said. "I don't know, maybe, [BEILEIN], their staff figured out at the end of the day you do gotta check people well to win".

The Wolverines are led by sweet shooting big man Mo Wagner, a German import who leads the team with 14.5 points per game. Isaac Haas stood in the center of the Purdue defense, keeping the Lions from driving.

Penn State and Minnesota and MI and Wisconsin meet in Game 2 on Saturday night.


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