Michigan Wolverines men's basketball remains perfect at 14-0 with 68-55 win over Penn State
By NOAH TRISTER
AP Sports Writer
ANN ARBOR — Jordan Poole is noticing some extra attention from opposing defenses now.
“I think today was the first time that I was actually being denied the ball on the perimeter, so it was something that I had to adjust to,” the Michigan sophomore said. “But we know that we were able to read the coverages. I think that’s something that really started to get us going later in the second half.”
Poole scored 17 points and Iggy Brazdeikis had 16 points and 11 rebounds as No. 2 Michigan returned to Big Ten play with a 68-55 victory over Penn State on Thursday night. It was the ninth straight game in double figures for Poole, who appeared comfortable on a night when his team struggled to get untracked.
The unbeaten Wolverines (14-0, 3-0) weren’t always that dominant while playing lesser competition in December, and the first half against Penn State (7-7, 0-3) wasn’t all that great either from an aesthetic standpoint. The teams combined for 18 turnovers in the first 20 minutes, and Michigan led 25-20.
The Nittany Lions scored the first two points of the second, but the Wolverines responded with a 13-3 run.
Charles Matthews scored 14 points for Michigan.
Mike Watkins scored 19 points for Penn State, and Lamar Stevens added 17 points and 10 rebounds.
Penn State shot 1 of 14 from 3-point range and couldn’t keep up after holding Michigan to 36-percent shooting in the first half.
“I really enjoyed this game, competing. I thought our team showed some real grit and some incredible passion,” Nittany Lions coach Patrick Chambers said. “This is a game we can build on.”
Michigan: Only four undefeated teams remain in Division I, and the Wolverines kept their run going with a workmanlike effort. Michigan has won eight straight against Penn State and has won 28 of its last 29 overall — with the only loss coming in last season’s national title game against Villanova.