Midgame run helps lift U-M past Western
Written by Matt Pargoff   

 

Facing off against an in-state opponent with eyes on pulling off a big upset, the Wolverines didn’t exactly have their best game. In fact, Michigan only took its first lead as time expired in the first half. That moment was the middle of a big run that spanned either side of the break, which ultimately turned the game in U-M’s favor, leading to a 70-62 victory.

Trailing by eight with just under three minutes remaining, Charles Matthews missed a pair of free throws. While he downplayed the significance of that moment after the game, it seemed to spark something in the senior guard going forward.

The Wolverines rattled off the next ten points heading into the half, with Matthews accounting for eight. Well known for struggling at the foul line in the past, he made nine of his final 10 free throws in the game.

Michigan continued on its momentum high in the second half, outscoring the Broncos 14-4 after the break. Western Michigan continued to linger within striking distance the rest of the game, but could never close the deficit to fewer than five points.

Matthews finished with a double-double, scoring 25 points and pulling down 10 rebounds. Zavier Simpson surprised WMU from long range, making three of four from outside the arc, scoring 15 points, while Jordan Poole added 14 to the scoring effort.

Improving to 11-0 on the season, the Wolverines will continue their one game a week schedule through the remainder of 2018, next playing host to Air Force on Saturday, Dec. 22 at 4 p.m. eastern, televised on Big Ten Network.

 
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