Wolverines scrap past Montana to advance
Written by Matt Pargoff   


The Wolverines entered the NCAA Tournament coming off an 11-day layoff and drawing a late start in the West Region. It showed. Michigan went scoreless through the first four minutes of their meeting with Montana, spotting the Grizzlies a 10-point edge early. Eventually catching on, the Maize and Blue pulled ahead in the first half and held on to win 61-47 in an ugly offensive game.

The Wolverines started to heat up riding the play of Charles Matthews, who had a team best 20 points and 11 rebounds.

Zavier Simpson and Moritz Wagner were two of Michigan’s key performers in the Big Ten Tournament run, but struggled to find their mark against Montana, combining for just 10 points. Simpson got in early foul trouble, with Jaaron Simmons stepping in during the first half to score six points as U-M battled back from its early deficit.

Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman added 11 points to the scoring effort for Michigan, which won its 10th straight game, improving to 29-7 on the season.

The Wolverines advanced to Round of 32 with the win, where they will face Houston (27-7) on Saturday at 9:40 p.m. eastern time. The 6-seed Cougars advanced by holding off San Diego State in a dramatic finish, led by a fantastic 39-point game from senior guard Rob Gray.


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