Wolverines overcome pesky Boilermakers
by Mark Snyder, USA TODAY Sports
Michigan expected to have a few tough matchups the rest of the Big Ten season.
Even with its 3-game winning streak, Purdue didn’t seem to be one. Yet with a blistering first half from three-point range, they were able to hang around longer than many expected Thursday.
But, as 18 teams are slowly discovering, the No. 3-ranked Wolverines can play a little defense when they need to, using it to take the lead early in the second half with a 10-0 run and holding off the Boilermakers, 68-53.
After watching Purdue hit seven first-half three-pointers, the Wolverines locked down after halftime, forcing nine consecutive missed threes.
With the Michigan (18-1, 5-1 Big Ten) offense grinding for points, the numbers were spread out, led by Trey Burke’s 15, followed by 13 from Tim Hardaway Jr. and 12 each from Glenn Robinson III and Nik Stauskas.
Michigan trailed at halftime at home for the first time this season, 33-32, primarily because it couldn’t defend the three-pointer.
Purdue (10-9, 3-3) hit 7-of-13 from long range in the first half, accounting for nearly two-thirds of its points.
The difference was that simple. U-M outshot them, outrebounded them and had twice as many points in the paint. But the long ball was enough.
Mark Snyder writes for the Detroit Free Press, a Gannett property.