Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Sports

March 6, 2013

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: No. 7 Michigan rallies, beats Purdue

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Michigan's destiny in the Big Ten race is in its own hands. Purdue didn't make things any easier for the Wolverines, though.

After falling behind in the second half, the Wolverines made a push and held on to stay alive for their share of the Big Ten title with an 80-75 victory over the Boilermakers on Wednesday night.

"Why can't it be us, so let's just go for it," Michigan coach John Beilein said. "We will have a regular routine and whatever happens, happens."

Trey Burke had 26 points and five rebounds for Michigan. He didn't need the motivation of having a chance at a share of the conference championship. Everything he needed came before the game from Purdue.

"There was a little trash talk from the other guards," Burke said. "But I didn't want to make it personal. I just started picking my spots. I felt like the more aggressive I was, the more open my teammates would be."

Terone Johnson scored a career-high 35 points and Rapheal Davis added 15 for Purdue (14-16 7-10 Big Ten), which has lost five of seven.

Nik Stauskas had 17 points and Tim Hardaway, Jr. had 16 points and five rebounds for the Wolverines (25-5, 12-5), who have won four of their last five.

The Wolverines will host No. 2 Indiana on Sunday.

"It's going to be a crazy environment on Sunday," Burke said. "Indiana is one of the best, if not the best. We've already lost down in Bloomington and they come to Ann Arbor Sunday so we will be ready."

Hardaway's 3-pointer with 3:46 left gave Michigan a 66-64 lead.

Stauskas made two free throws and a 3-pointer to extend the lead and Burke added two free throws with 20 seconds left to make it 77-73.

"I was ready today, and I wanted to give it all to my team," Stauskas said.

The Wolverines handed the Boilermakers their 10th conference loss. It's the first time the Boilermakers have lost at least 10 Big Ten regular season games since 2005-06 — Matt Painter's first season as head coach.

Burke started Michigan's big run in the second half with a 3-pointer and Stauskas later hit a 3 to make it 54-48.

Burke made two free throws to make it 55-50 and Robinson made two more from the line to make it 55-52 with 7:43 left.

But they were never able to take a big lead at the end.

After Burke gave the Wolverines a late five-point lead, Terone Johnson scored to make it 77-75.

"I felt like we put ourselves in a good position to win," Terone Johnson said. "We just didn't come out with it in the end."

Burke was fouled again and split from the line. Burked grabbed a steal and then went to the line again and scored both free throws with seconds remaining.

"It was everybody coming together in the second half," Hardaway said. "At halftime we did a good job of saying 'Hey this is it, Big Ten Title is on the line.'"

It was another solid performance by the Boilermakers, who upset Wisconsin on Sunday. They host Minnesota on Saturday to wrap up the regular season.

"I just think we've all came together at the end of the season, saved our best basketball for last." Davis said. "We've just been playing hard, putting everything together and start forgetting about ourselves and start playing for the coaches, the alumni and the fans."

 

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