The scene was set — the Maize Rage was out in full trolling force with Chinese flags and giant LaVar Ball heads front and center.
With no one with the last name of “Ball” in Ann Arbor this weekend, and a few big time football recruits in town for a visit, you would think that may be enough to get an actual win for the men’s basketball team, right?
Well, it took a while to get there, but those things may have very well assisted.
The Wolverines defeated the UCLA Bruins 78-69 in overtime on Saturday at the Crisler Center in Ann Arbor.
Here’s how this crazy game went down:
- Charles Matthews got things going with an easy dunk. Michigan began the scoring, 2-0.
- Duncan Robinson continued his shooting woes. He missed his first two attempts, and per the CBS broadcast he was 4 of his last 25 shooting after those two misses. He finished the half 1-of-4 with 2 points and 2 fouls.
- About halfway through the contest, Michigan was just 4-of-14 from the field, with Matthews having two of those four. UCLA, meanwhile, was shooting 63.6 percent and led 16-10 at the time.
- Wagner went on a personal 8-point run for Michigan, two of those eight coming from a real nice reverse layup. Thanks to Wagner’s run, Michigan and UCLA were tied at 18.
- Unfortunately, after Wagner’s run, the Wolverines’ shooting struggles came back. They went 4-of-13 the rest of the way, while UCLA’s Thomas Welsh scored seven straight for the Bruins at one point. Welsh ended the first half with 13 points, and Michigan (somehow) trailed 30-27 at the end of the half.
1st half notable stats
- Michigan made just one free-throws (1-of-4) while UCLA was 5-of-7.
- Michigan took six more shots than UCLA, but the Bruins made one more field goal (12) than the Wolverines did (11).
- UCLA owned the rebounding game in the first half, 26-10.
- The Wolverines stayed in the game thanks to the Bruins’ 12 first-half turnovers, with a handful of those coming from travels. Michigan took advantage of those turnovers by scoring 13 points off them.
- UCLA’s Welsh began the scoring in the second half with an easy 3-point shot. 33-27 Bruins.
- The Bruins went on a 13-4 run in the first five minutes of the second half. Michigan was 1-of-6 with two made free-throws.
- With the Bruins up 15, Michigan needed someone to light a spark on offense. Look no further than Charles Matthews. The transfer took control and, like Wagner in the first half, went on a personal 8-0 run to make it 46-39 UCLA.
- UCLA called a timeout after Matthews’ run, and it helped the team get back into rhythm for the time being. UCLA went back up by nine points and seemed to have all the momentum...
- ...that is until Wagner took over. He made two 3-pointers in the span of 60 seconds, along with a dunk and an Eli Brooks layup. Michigan was suddenly down by two points with 3 minutes to go.
- Now down three points with under 30 seconds, Zavier Simpson created a huge turnover for the Wolverines which led to two points on a layup. Eli Brooks then hit two clutch free throws on Michigan’s next possession to tie it up at 65. UCLA missed its final shot attempt. Overtime.
- Zavier Simpson hit the first shot of the overtime period, nailing a 3-pointer. Matthews then hit a 3-pointer on U-M’s next possession, putting the Wolverines up by six points, their largest lead of the game.
- UCLA committed several turnovers midway through the overtime period, which led to Michigan slowing down the game and then converting its field goals. Michigan was up by nine points with 2:11 left, and was on a 15-3 run going back to the second half.
- The Wolverines went 5-for-5 from the field in overtime, but still missed 3-of-4 free throws. UCLA converted just two field goals in overtime.
Endgame individual stats
- Wagner: 23 points, 3 rebounds, 2 steals
- Matthews: 20 points, 8 rebounds (2-of-10 from the free-throw line)
- Simpson: 15 points (2-of-2 3’s), 4 steals
Endgame team stats
- Free throws: 8-of-22 (yikes)
- Bench points: 18. UCLA had just 4 points from its bench.
- Steals: 12. UCLA had just 2.
- Turnovers: 11. UCLA had 20