How it Happened
The game started with the teams racing from end to end. Indiana (15-11, 5-8 Big Ten) came out playing with tremendous intensity on both ends of the floor, but still struggled to take care of the ball on offense. A pair of early turnovers led to five Michigan points and a 9-6 lead for the Wolverines at the under-16 timeout. Derrick Walton Jr. scored five points and grabbed two rebounds for UM in the first five minutes.
Indiana continued to struggle with turnovers as the first half wore on. Its fourth turnover led to another basket on the other end of the floor for the Wolverines (16-9, 6-6). When UM's Zak Irvin drove to the hoop for a layup plus a foul and hit the free throw, Michigan had a 14-8 lead, including a 7-0 advantage in points off turnovers. De'Ron Davis responded for IU, though, cutting across the lane in the post and knocking in a fadeaway jumper through a foul. He made the free throw, as well, to cut the deficit in half with 12:09 to go in the first session.
Michigan kept building its lead as the half passed its midway point. A pair of 3-pointers, from Duncan Robinson and Walton Jr., respectively, pushed UM's lead to as many as nine at 22-13 with 9:15 left in the half. Meanwhile, Indiana was struggling shooting from outside. Bryant missed a 3 just past the nine-minute mark of the half, leaving the Hoosiers 0-for-5 from deep.
The teams traded baskets over the next several minutes and 3-point shooting continued to be the difference for the Wolverines. UM's lead hit double digits when Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman drained a triple from the right wing. Mo Wagner followed with the Wolverines' sixth triple of the half on ten attempts, ballooning his team's lead to 33-20. After he hit the 3, Wagner turned to run back up the court and accidentally ran over Tom Crean in front of the Hoosiers' bench. No one was hurt.
The final minutes of the half were sloppy on both sides with the teams combining for five turnovers in the last two minutes. Indiana's three giveaways in that stretch gave it 10 for the half, which, combined with a 0-of-6 showing from beyond the arc, explained why the Hoosiers trailed 35-25 as the teams went into the locker room at halftime. Walton Jr. led all scorers with 10 points in the half while Davis was the star for the Hoosiers, repeatedly scoring from the post, totaling eight points and three rebounds.
The second half started as sloppily as the first ended, as Michigan and Indiana combined to miss seven straight shots to open the half. Josh Newkirk finally broke the streak with a hard drive to the hoop for a layup that got IU back within single digits. The Wolverines continued to struggle from the field for several minutes, missing six straight 3s to begin the half. Wagner finally got his team on the board with a triple from the top of the key, Michigan's first field goal in over seven minutes going back to the first half.
Davis continued to carry the load on offense for the Hoosiers, dropping five straight points from the post to get the Assembly Hall crowd on his feet. Even better for the Hoosiers, Blackmon Jr. hit a 3 with 13:38 to play to cut the UM lead to just six at 41-35. It was not only Indiana's first triple on 10 attempts, it was also the junior guard's first points of the afternoon in his second game back from a leg injury.
Michigan pushed its lead back to as many as 11, but Indiana wouldn't go away. The Hoosiers started to heat up from beyond the arc as Robert Johnson and Juwan Morgan knocked down 3s from opposite corners on consecutive possessions to make it 50-43 in favor of the Wolverines at the 10-minute mark. The triples were two of 10 straight shots the teams combined to hit during that stretch.
Out of a timeout, Michigan came out firing again, ripping off a 6-0 run to extend its lead back to 13. DJ Wilson punctuated the run with a nice turnaround jumper from 15 feet away over the outstretched arm of Morgan. The shot put UM in front 56-43 with 8:30 left and put Indiana's back to the wall.
Michigan held Indiana at an arm's length as the minutes slipped away. As the clocked ticked below five minutes left, Indiana went to a full-court press after baskets in an effort to put pressure on the Wolverines. With just under four minutes remaining, Morgan drove to the hoop and laid the ball in through a foul. He missed the free throw but Johnson followed with a layup of his own to cut UM's lead to eight at 61-53.
In the end, though, Michigan was too much for the Hoosiers. Wilson and Walton Jr. slammed the door on IU, scoring a pair of baskets to push the lead to 12 with two minutes left. Wilson's acrobatic driving layup put the lid on Indiana's fifth loss in six games.
Player of the Game-DJ Wilson
The lanky junior had a solid all-around game, scoring 13 points on 6-for-11 from the field, but stuffing the stat sheet in other ways, as well. He grabbed two rebounds, dished off two assists and used his length to bother Indiana defensively all game. He blocked three shots and racked up three steals to stymie the IU offense.
This is just the second win in Assembly Hall for UM in its last 19 trips...The win is UM's first in a true road game this season...Wagner had the first double-double of his career as a Wolverine, scoring 11 points and grabbing 10 rebounds...Walton Jr. had 20 points or more for the fifth straight game...The Hoosiers entered today leading the Big Ten and sixth in the nation in average rebounding margin at plus-8.4 and outrebounded the Wolverines 32-28..The Wolverines entered the game committing the fewest turnovers per game of any team in the nation, with just 9.5; IU forced eight UM turnovers and Michigan held a 20-6 advantage in points off TOs...Davis scored in double digits for the third time as a Hoosier
The Hoosiers are back in action Wednesday on the road at Williams Arena in Minneapolis against Minnesota (18-7, 6-6). The game will tip off at 9 p.m. EST and will be broadcast on the Big Ten Network. The Golden Gophers have been streaky in conference play, with five straight losses followed by wins in its three most recent games. Minnesota boasts wins over Purdue and Northwestern this season.