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Michigan 88 - Holy Cross 66: Some Good News

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Michigan picks up one final non-conference win before Big Ten play starts in January.

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

On an otherwise underwhelming day for Michigan sports (the football and hockey teams both lost badly), Michigan's hoops squad did a solid job handling the recent adversity caused by Mitch McGary's back injury which will keep him out the rest of the season because of surgery.

Glenn Robinson III stepped up big for Michigan, finishing with 23 points on 14 shots and stuffing the stat sheet with five rebounds, two assists and a steal. It was a positive sign for the future from Robinson, who has been inconsistent so far this year in his increased role as a scorer and shot creator.

Michigan's other two wings also had nice outings as Nik Stauskas and Caris LeVert both scored 16 points while combining for 13 rebounds and six assists. Both shot the ball well from outside and continue to give Michigan a pair of versatile threats capable of getting into the paint or hitting outside shots.

In Mitch McGary's place Michgian leaned heavily on Jon Horford and Jordan Morgan. Morgan started the game and put up six points, five rebounds, and an assist in 22 minutes. He was also a perfect three for three from the floor. Horford scored ten and grabbed five boards while adding an assist and a block. While neither player provides the same dynamic playmaker presence that McGary is able to generate on his own, both do a good job of filling a role in the offense and working the glass.

The other remaining question is how well Derrick Walton will play as the schedule gets tougher next week. Walton once again struggled offensively and with McGary sidelined for the rest of the season Walton will have to carry more of the offensive load, especially when it comes to getting the ball up the court in transition.

Overall it was a positive win for Michigan, which survived against a Holy Cross team that did a good job hitting its shots from outside. It still remains to be seen just how good this team can be without Mitch McGary, but this was an encouraging start to this new reality.

Big Ten play will kick off this Thursday against Minnesota at 7pm in The Barn.