|#2 Michigan (12-0)||40||53||93|
|Eastern Michigan (6-4)||24||30||54|
In the battle over Washtenaw County, the University of Michigan once again reigned supreme in a blowout victory over the Eastern Michigan Eagles of Ypsilanti. The Wolverines made more than half their shots to continue their hottest start in more than two decades, now sitting at 12-0 overall with just one game left before Big Ten play begins in early January.
As has been the case many times before, the Michigan starters paved the way early on, leading to a 22-6 start after falling behind 6-2 in the opening minutes. The Wolverines were paced by Tim Hardaway, Jr.’s 17 points on 5-of-13 shooting (1-of-4 3pt., 6-of-6 FTs), seven assists, five rebounds, and two steals and double digit scoring from four teammates.
Obviously this win was expected, and while a 39-point margin of victory is always impressive, Michigan is at the point where few non-major conference opponents can even pose a challenge. Eastern Michigan beat Purdue earlier this year and came into Thursday night’s game with a 6-3 record, but they were clearly out of their league at the Crisler Center, shooting only 35.5 percent from the field and missing most of their shots badly.
Perhaps most impressive about this Michigan team to date is their balanced scoring attack. There is no doubt as to who this team’s offensive leaders are – Hardaway, Jr. and Trey Burke – but John Beilein has four to five guys that can put double digit points on the board on any given night.
Nik Stauskas was impressive again, poured in 16 points on 5-8 shooting, all from downtown, fellow freshman Glenn Robinson III added 13, leading scorer Burke dropped 11 on a 5-of-14 off-night, and Mitch McGary rounded out the double-digiters with 10 points and 11 rebounds, his first career double-double.
It was an all-around dominant, and admittedly boring, display for the Maize and Blue, who seem to look better and better with every game. At this point in the season, it is hard to imagine this team getting anything worse than a two or three seed in the Big Dance, which would almost guarantee a first-round ticket to the Palace of Auburn Hills.
In addition to the dominant scoring, Michigan destroyed their neighbors on the glass, rebounding nearly 50 percent of their own misses and 71 percent of Eastern’s clankers. McGary led the way in the rebounding department but was joined by an overall effort on the glass, with nine other Wolverines recording at least two rebounds and three with at least five. Michigan also managed to triple up Eastern in assists, stole four more possessions, and turned the ball over seven fewer times than their counterparts.
Michigan is now all but guaranteed to finish their non-conference season undefeated, with only one more game coming up next Saturday against Central Michigan. They will take a much-needed break before tipping off against Northwestern in Evanston on January 3. Beilein did well to rest his stars last night, with Hardaway, Jr. and Burke barely playing 30 minutes apiece. By the time the real games roll around, these young Wolverines should be ready to go. Will the dominance continue? Only time will tell.
|Final Game Stats|
|01||Glenn Robinson III*||5-7||1-1||2-2||1||1||2||0||13||0||0||0||1||29|
|10||Tim Hardaway Jr*||5-13||1-4||6-6||1||4||5||0||17||7||4||1||2||31|