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Michigan Basketball nabs first win of 2019 calendar year over Penn State

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The Wolverines rang in the New Year with another win, albeit in a bit of a slugfest.

NCAA Basketball: Penn State at Michigan Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan Men’s Basketball is coming off of a 2018 calendar year where they went 34-5 as a program and did more of the same in their first game of 2019. The Wolverines (14-0, 3-0 B1G) welcomed a desperate Penn State (7-7. 0-3 B1G) to town in the first game of the new year and were able to walk out with a 68-55 win.

Michigan was led on the score sheet by Jordan Poole, who finished the game with 17 points. Ignas Brazdeikis and Charles Matthews chipped in with 16 points of their own each.

Isaiah Livers did not play in Thursday night’s contest with what U-M Athletics described as back spasms. His status moving forward was not known at the time of this posting.

The first half was a bit of a snoozefest for the fans in attendance and watching at home. Outside of a sequence that saw Poole nail a triple and hit Austin Davis on one of the best passes you’ll see all season, it was a quiet and rather uneventful half of basketball. Michigan would go into the locker room with a 25-20 lead, which is exactly the type of game the Nittany Lions were hoping to get Michigan in.

The second half saw things begin to open up, as the Wolverines roared out of the gate with a 22-11 run to take a 47-31 lead, but that was when PSU made it interesting again. They were able to go on a 7-0 run and get the lead down to 51-43 and the two teams would continue to trade blows. Michigan would pull out to a 58-47 lead at the 5:39 mark on a Charles Matthews three-pointer and they would never look back from there. Penn State got it back to single digits with 2:24 remaining at 60-51 in favor of Michigan, but Brazdeikis delivered the dagger with a three of his own followed by a pair of Poole free throws.

Another home game follows for Michigan Basketball on Sunday when they welcome the Indiana Hoosiers for a 4:30 p.m. ET tipoff from Crisler Center. The game will be televised via CBS.