The University of Minnesota men's basketball team's road woes continued with a 75-63 loss to Michigan today in the Crisler Arena. The Golden Gophers (9-6, 1-3) kept the game close until the 7:48 mark in the second half when a LaVell Blanchard three-pointer sparked an 18-4 run to earn the victory for Michigan (12-6, 5-0).
The Maroon and Gold gained a six-point lead in the second half when Rick Rickert made a jumper at 13:03 to bring the score to 50-44. In the following six minutes, there were six lead changes and two ties with the Wolverines gaining offensive momentum when Blanchard rattled in a three-pointer to start an 18-4 run at 7:25. In the final minutes, Minnesota was held to just one three-pointer and one free throw.
The Golden Gophers got off to a seven-point lead in the first half, which was capped off with a three-pointer from Kevin Burleson at 9:42. Michigan then went on a 7-0 run to tie the game up when Jerry Holman received his third personal foul and Bernard Robinson Jr. sunk two free throws at 4:42.
Minnesota battled back and a Michael Bauer three with just over a minute to play brought the score to 31-30 in the Gophers favor. But, with just seconds remaining in the half, LaVell Blanchard made a jumpshot to give the Wolverines a one-point lead as the buzzer went off.
With just a 31.4 field goal percentage, Minnesota's defense was the key to containing Michigan's offense in the first half by forcing 12 turnovers with four blocks, six steals and 17 rebounds.
Rickert was the leading scorer for Minnesota with 15 points and eight rebounds. Bauer had 14 points, eight rebounds and two blocks, while Burleson added 13 points and six assists.
The Michigan Wolverines were led by Blanchard with 28 points and nine rebounds. Robinson Jr. had a double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds.
Next up for the Maroon and Gold is Northwestern on Saturday, Jan. 25 at 7:00 p.m. in Williams Arena.