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December 05, 2012 - Image 8

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The Michigan Daily, 2012-12-05

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8A - Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

SA - Wednesday, December 5, 2012 The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom 4

WMU handled
easily at Crisler

Michigan transition
too fast for Broncos

By DANIEL WASSERMAN
Daily Sports Writer
With a little more than three
minutes left in the first half and
the Maize Rage counting down
the ticking seconds left on the shot
clock, Trey Burke tried creating
space for himself, going first to his
left and then to his right.
Five. Four. Three.
Fresh-
man guard WMU 41
Caris LeVert MICHIGAN 73
stood alone
at the top of the key, so Burke
passed to him, and out of despera-
tion, LeVert heaved up the first
shot of his career, barely beating
the buzzer.
Swish.
Moments later, the situation
repeated itself, this time with
freshman guard Nik Stauskas
launching the shot with the clock
winding down. And after drawing
an offensive foul on the other end,
another freshman, forward Mitch
McGary, finished an easy layup,
capping a 15-2 Wolverine run to
give No. 3 Michigan an 18-point
advantage after another sluggish
start to a game.
After each team scored just one
field goal - both 3-pointers - in
the second half's first four min-
utes, the Wolverines pulled away
with an 11-2 run to extend their
lead to 23, and hung on to win eas-
ily, 73-41, over Western Michigan.
In the second half, the Broncos
(6-2) couldn't keep up. Michigan's
decisiverunbeganwith Stauskas's
second 3-pointer of the half and
was punctuated by back-to-back
and-1s from freshman forward
Glenn Robinson III and Burke.
Burke led all scorers with 20
points - two short of his season
high - and also dished out seven
assists. Perhaps more impressive-
ly, he finished with no turnovers,
while recording three steals.
"He's got an edge of toughness
and a pace to him that he under-
stands when we need him to do
more and when we need him to
just find these good shooters we
have around him," said Michigan
coach John Beilein.
Added Burke: "(The Broncos)
were giving me the elbow jump
shot, and that's the shot that I've
been working on with Coach
(LaVall Jordan). He told me that
that shot would be there. Once
they started taking that away,
that's when I would start kicking

it out."
After Burke, Michigan (8-0)
relied on a wealth of diverse scor-
ing options, including 18 points
from the bench. Just two other
players - Stauskas (11 points) and
McGary (10) - scored in double
figures, with Stauskas knocking
down 3-of-4 of his 3-pointers.
Junior guard Tim Hardaway, Jr.
and Robinson each struggled to
find the bottom of the net, shoot-
ing a combined 6-for-20. But on
this night, it didn't matter as 'M'
outscored - Western Michigan,
38-19, in the second half.
"It's good to rotate everyone
in there, because you never know
who we're going to need at what
point in the season," said redshirt
junior Jordan Morgan. "We've got
to have that 'next man up' mental-
ity as Coach (Jordan) says, where
the next guy's ready to step up and
fill in. It is refreshing to be able to
play whoever and they come in
and get the job done."
Despite 10 first-half points from
Burke, Michigan failed early on
to do what it had done so well for
much of the season. The Wolver-
ines shot just 3-of-10 from 3-point
range in the opening stanza and
were outrebounded, 16-12. The
Broncos trailed by 14 at the half,
35-21, thanks largely to five first-
half offensive boards that helped
keep them within reach.
"If you looked at our faces inthe
first 10 minutes, we did not predict
that outcome," Beilein said. "The
ball was flying around. They've
got a great scheme that they're
running and they ran it with such
speed and precision (that) our
heads were spinning."
But in the second half, Michi-
gan improved on both statistics,
shooting 5-for-11 from 3-point
land to finish with a 38.1 percent
mark and winning the overall
rebounding battle, 35-31.
Forward Darius Paul was the
only Bronco to score in double fig-
ures, finishing with just 10 points.
Though 10 Western Michigan
players scored, the team shot just
28.1 percent from the field, made
just 2-of-17 3-pointers and turned
the ball over 18 times, leadingto 22
Michigan points.
NOTES: Redshirt freshman
forward Max Bielfeldt sprained
his ankle during practice on Tues-
day and missed Wednesday's
game. His status is uncertain for
Saturday's game against Arkan-
sas.

By COLLEEN THOMAS
Daily Sports Writer
Sophomore guard Trey Burke
found himself alone in Michi-
gan's offensive half of the court
multiple times on Tuesday.
Whether it be for his third career
dunk or an easy layup, he was
consistently yards away from the
nearest Bronco.
Burke and the Wolverines'
defense took advantage of West-
ern Michigan's giveaways in
Tuesday's 73-41 win. The Bron-
cos committed 13 turnovers in
the first half and 18 in total. From
shot clock violations to bad pass-
es to steals - you name it, Michi-
gan forced them all.
Though tough defense isn't
normally Michigan's strength,
the Wolverines played a full 40
minutes, forcing Western Michi-
gan to take errant shots and
force bad passes. With Burke and
redshirt junior forward Jordan
Morgan leading, No. 3 Michigan
added 22 points off of turnovers,
many times adding a dunk as an
exclamation point. For Michigan
coach John Beilein, this is a sign
of maturation on defense.
"Our fast break keyed our
first half and the second half, we
executed offense really well and
our defense was terrific," Beilein
said. "We haven't been turn-
ing people over a lot. There are
a couple of schools of thought,
when you can really block out
and defensive rebound and
defend - that's sort of a turnover
too, a bad shot with a rebound. I
do like those because usually the
turnovers are easy baskets."
Though the game didn't start
out crisply on defense - Western
Michigan held within five points
of Michigan until late in the first
half from multiple shots per pos-
session - Beilein credited turn-
overs as the deciding factor in
winning the possession battle in
the first half.
Many of the Broncos' turn-
overs were a result of great guard
play on defense.
Western Michigan was forced
to play on the perimeter and
couldn't effectively rotate the
ball to find an open man in the
paint.
The Broncos made bad pass-
es and seconds later, Burke or
another Wolverine would be on
the other end of the floor to pad
Michigan's lead.
Western Michigan coach
Steve Hawkins said that after

several failed attempts to set up
the outside game, the Broncos
would look down low for scoring
but often times forced the ball
inside, which resulted in another
turnover.
"They're able to get out in
transition because of turnovers
- some were in the variety of bad
passes and others we charged
too much," Hawkins said.
"I felt like a huge difference in
the game was guard play. Trey
Burke, Tim Hardaway, Jr., Nik
Stauskas - they can play the
game."
As the ball fell into the Wol-
verines' hands from bad passes
or ball-handling, Michigan was
easily able to go coast-to-coast
for a layup or kick it out for an
open three on the perimeter.
Burke and freshman forward
Mitch McGary recorded dunks
in transition and junior guard
Tim Hardaway, Jr. recorded
seven of his nine points in tran-
sition.
Burke scored just six of his 20
points from fast breaks, but he
was a pivotal player in almost
every transition point scored
Tuesday. Though the sophomore
guard was critical of how the
team played overall on defense,
Burke noted that the 22 points
off turnovers often started
with a good defensive stop or a
rebound.
. "The coaches, they prefer
you get steals and that's our
best offense," Burke said. "Get-
ting a steal and moving it ahead
for a fast break layup or dunk.
Stay solid on defense, make the
defense get the ball to you and
go from there. That's the key for
us, making consistent plays on
defense.
"I think our transition offense
is one of our best offenses (and)
we did a great job tonight."

-4

4

TODD NEEDLE/Daily
(Top) Junior guard Tim HardawayJr. struggled shooting on Tuesday, but
Michigan still had little trouble with Western Michigan. (Middle) Sopho-
more guard Trey Burke was the game's leading scorer with 20 points.
(Bottom) Freshman forward Mitch McGary scored 10 points and was one
of three Wolverines to finish in double figures.

After tough 2-game stretch, Wolverines play at Illinois State

By ALEXA DETTELBACH
Daily Sports Writer
The Michigan women's bas-
ketball team is on the road again.
After closing out a five-game
home stand on Saturday with a
59-53 win over Florida, the Wol-
verines are set to face off against
Illinois State (4-2) in Normal, Ill.
on Wednesday.
Initslasttwogames, Michigan
(6-2)-has faced its two toughest
opponents of the young season.
The Wolverines
lost, 71-54, to Michigan at
No. 4 Duke last
weekend. Illinois State
The first Matchup:
half of the Michigan
game against 6-2; Illinois
the Blue Dev- State 4-2
ils was close, When:
with Michigan Wednesday
cutting Duke's 7 P.M.
lead to three at Where: Red-
halftime, but bird Arena
the Wolverines TV/Radio:
were unable to BTN.com
rally in the sec-
ond half.
After a two-day break, Michi-
gan trumped the Gators on Sat-
urday, ending its home stand
with its fourth victories in five
games.
During that stretch the Wol-
verines started senior forward
Nya Jordan in place of sopho-
more guard Brenae Harris.
Jordan has given Michigan a
much-needed rebounding pres-
ence
"I definitely think rebounding
is an issue for us," said Michigan
coach Kim Barnes Arico. "(Flor-
ida) really hurt us on the offen-
sive boards and that's probably

where they scored most of their
points, especially in the second
half.
"We need to have bigger,
stronger kids out there, and Nya
gives us that presence."
Plagued by ACL injuries, the
Wolverines are very thin at for-
ward and have constantly looked
to guards to help on the boards.
Another issue this season has
been turnovers, an area that
Michigan improved upon against
Florida.
"We had some silly turnovers,
but for the most part I think we
handled the ball pretty well,
especially late in the second
half," Barnes Arico said. "Late in
the game we did a nice job tak-
ing care of the ball. If we limit
our turnovers we limit their
transition - the strength of their
team."
With improved rebounding
and fewer turnovers, the Wol-
verines are ready to hit the road.
They will travel to face Illinois
State Wednesday.
The Red Birds features senior
guard Jamie Russell - who aver-
ages 17.3 points per game, 7.2
rebounds per game and three
steals per game - sophomore
forward Janae Smith who aver-
ages 17 points per game on
54-percent shooting and adds a
team-high eight rebounds per
game.
As if Russell and Smith
weren't lethal enough, Illinois
State also adds senior guard Can-
dace Sykes, who has emerged off
the bench to average a team-high
17.8 points per game with 5.8
rebounds per game.
With a potent Red Birds
offense, the Wolverines will

need to continue to rely on their
strong trio of seniors, guard
Jenny Ryan, center Rachel Shef-
fer and forward Kate Thompson.
In addition, the strong guard
play from Illinois State will pres-
sure the Wolverines to continue
forcing turnovers in Normal,
something the Red Birds are suc-
cessful at - they force 12.9 per
game.
In addition, the Wolverines
will look to their experience and

improved defensive presence to
match the offensive firepower of
the Red Birds.
"Our kids know you go on the
road and sometimes you have to
play in front of a hostile crowd,"
Barnes Arico said. "We've been
down this road before and (we)
know we've got to keep (our)
focus.
"It doesn't matter where we're
playing, it's about Michigan bas-
ketball."

4

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