Down 20 at Half; U-M Rallies for OT Win.

The Michigan basketball team improved to 5-1 on the season with a 66-64 overtime win over underdog Savannah State University on Saturday afternoon at Crisler Arena. DeShawn Sims hit an 18-foot buzzer beater to end the overtime contest. He finished with a double-double on 23 points and 12 rebounds.

ANN ARBOR -- The heavily-favored U-M basketball got off to a miserable start falling behind the visiting Savannah State Tigers by 20 points at halftime before rallying to the tune of a 66-64 overtime win on Saturday afternoon at Crisler Arena in Ann Arbor.

Back-and-forth through much of the overtime session, Michigan's DeShawn Sims, the Wolverines leading scorer with 23, sunk the game-winning shot from 18-feet away to be the final difference on the scoreboard as the final buzzer sounded.

Trailing 39-19 through the first half, Sims started the Michigan second half rally straight from the get-go with his first three-pointer of the season just 13-seconds in. Minutes later a feed from Stu Douglass set Sims up for another bunny.

Freshman Zack Novak and Manny Harris then brought the Wolverines back within 10. Novak connected on a three-ball just less than four minutes into the half, then tallied a steal. On the break he found Harris, who ultimately connected on a pair of free throws to make it 39-29 with 15 minutes to play.

Novak connected from three-point land just out of the first media timeout of the half to trim the lead to seven points at 39-32, and Harris followed it up with another bucket to end Michigan's 15-0 run start to the second half.

Over the next 10 minutes the teams struggled back and forth. Matching basket-for-basket, Savannah State stayed just steps ahead of the Wolverines until the final minutes of the contest. Not until a pair of Manny Harris free throws with six minutes left did U-M claw within one possession.

Not until just 2:54 remained on the clock did U-M finally pull even. Another pair of Harris free throws, Harris finished 14-for-14 from the line, did the score read 51-51.

DeShawn Sims then went 1-for-2 at the line to give Michigan its first lead of the second half with 2:23 to play, but the Tigers answered back with their seventh triple of the game.

It was the first of two Savannah State two point leads in the final minute and a half, but U-M's Harris went four-for-four at the line in the final minutes to keep the score at 56-56 as Savannah State looked to set up one final shot.

Michigan's Zack Novak stole the in-bound, however, but his dunk attempt in the final seconds found its way out of the net and the teams would be forced into overtime.

In the extra frame the back-and-forth battle waged on. Michigan struck first as Sims went 1-for-2 from the free throw line. SSUM went up by one with a pair of free throws of their own, though, on its ensuing possession.

David Merritt tied it with a free throw, but Savannah State went up by two again at 60-58 on an inside jumper by Tracy Rankins.

Zack Novak put Michigan back up 61-58 with his third triple of the game with 1:39 to play. Savannah State answered with a bucket of their own to go back up one. With 38 seconds to play, though, Michigan's Manny Harris forced a Savannah State foul with a hard drive to the lane and an old-fashioned three-point play to put Michigan up 64-62 with 19 seconds left. Savannah State had one more answer with five seconds left, setting the stage for Sims buzzer-beater from 18-feet away as time expired.

Michigan next returns to the floor on Wednesday night as the 5-1 Wolverines meet the 4-1 Maryland Terrapins in the 2008 Big 10/ACC Challenege. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. on ESPNU.

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