One of March Madness’ most famous statements is “survive and advance”.
The Wolverines did just that, as the No. 12 seed Iowa Hawkeyes took No. 5 U-M to overtime before they were able to secure a 77-71 win on Thursday afternoon in Madison Square Garden.
Iowa’s Luka Garza had a good look at a 3-pointer late in overtime but couldn’t connect as the Wolverines were able to ice it from there.
The win marks the 12th consecutive year U-M has at least one win in the Big Ten Tournament.
Iowa was able to put together a 5-0 run heading into the first media timeout capped off by a Jordan Bohannon 3-pointer. The Hawkeyes led 9-4.
The Wolverines would respond though, getting a couple layups from Mortiz Wagner off the bench from early foul trouble. It resulted in a 19-14 Wolverine lead with 10:14 left in the half.
The Hawkeyes struck back with a quick 7-0 run to take a 33-31 lead with 2:56 to play in the first half. Beilein took a timeout to regroup his team.
The Hawkeyes would get another triple from Garza and went into the locker room with a 40-35 lead.
U-M was 0-of-7 from downtown in the first half while Iowa went 5-of-9. The Hawkeyes got a few key Wolverines (Wagner, Duncan Robinson and Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman) hit with a pair of early fouls to keep them on the bench.
The Wolverines didn’t waste time to find a rhythm.
Capped off by a freshman forward Isaiah Livers alley-oop, the Wolverines started the second half on a 8-0 run to take a 43-40 lead.
U-M would continue to advance the lead, getting a steal and slam dunk from freshman Jordan Poole to boast a 53-46 advantage with 11:46 remaining.
The Big Ten’s Sixth Man of the Year then came to life as Robinson netted a pair of triples to keep the Wolverines cushion intact at 59-53 with under seven minutes to play.
With the Wolverines leading by three points in the final minute, a pair of turnovers and a missed free throw from Abdur-Rahkman allowed Bohannon to sink a triple. It tied the game at 67 all and eventually led to overtime.
However, the Wolverines were able to hold the Hawkeyes to just four points in overtime and walk away with the victory.
U-M finished 3-of-19 from beyond the arc and 18-of-32 from the free-throw-line. Iowa had 14 turnovers which U-M turned into 12 points.
It was Matthews who led the Wolverines with 16 points, but Robinson’s 11 points all came in timely fashion when U-M needed a boost.
The Wolverines will resume play tomorrow at approximately 2:30 p.m. against Nebraska on the Big Ten Network.
- This was just the third time Abdur-Rahkman fouled out in 135 career games.
- Iowa’s only field goal of overtime came on its first possession.
- Wagner (15) and Abdur-Rahkman (22) both finished with season-lows in minutes played.