Badgers Upend No. 24 Wolverines

The No. 24-ranked Michigan basketball team fell to 0-1 in Big 10 play with a 73-61 loss to the Wisconsin Badgers on Wednesday afternoon at Crisler Arena. Zack Novak led all U-M players with 20 points. Manny Harris, the Big 10's leading scorer, finished with just nine points on 3-for-13 shooting.

ANN ARBOR -- The No. 24-ranked Michigan basketball team dropped its conference opener 73-61 to the visiting Wisconsin Badgers on Wednesday afternoon at Crisler Arena. Freshman Zack Novak led all scorers with 20 Michigan points in a game that Michigan trailed almost the entire way.

Aside from a quick layup on the Wolverines first possession, Manny Harris, the Big 10's leading scorer entering the contest, struggled. Shooting just 3-for-13 from the floor, Harris, who did grab six rebounds, finished with just nine points.

Following a back-and-forth start to the contest, the visiting Badgers established a lead that would be insurmountable with a 9-0 run that saw contributions from four different scorers. It gave the Badgers a 20-9 edge on the scoreboard.

Zack Novak answered with his second triple of the contest, and three-ball's from Laval Lucas-Perry and C.J. Lee would get Michigan back within five points at 26-21 with 7:46 left in the first half, but that was as close as Michigan would get.

For each made Michigan bucket, the Badgers had an answer. Trevon Hughes connected from downtown to push Wisconsin's lead back to 10 at 31-21. Jon Leuer found his way to the rim to make it 33-21.

Novak hit again from deep, then grabbed an offensive board for a quick put back to bring Michigan back within 35-27. Wisconsin, though, ended the half on 7-4 run to lead 42-31 at halftime.

Novak continued to battle with Michigan's first five points of the second half to cut the Badgers lead to 44-38. Wisconsin, though, again stretched its lead with a balanced scoring run. Marcus Landry and Trevon Hughes combined for 10 straight Badgers points as Wisconsin's lead grew to 58-42.

Eventually the lead grew to 18 points as the Badgers continued to poor it on offensively. Michigan got back within 64-55 with just minutes left, but no closer.

Wisconsin finished the game off at the free throw line in the 73-61 win.

Michigan looks to get back to its winning ways when the Wolverines host Illinois on Sunday afternoon at Crisler Arena. Tip-off is scheduled for 12:00.

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