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Posted on Wed, Nov 23, 2011 : 10:52 p.m.

Michigan basketball team scorches Maui nets in 79-63 win against UCLA

By Nick Baumgardner


UCLA's Jerime Anderson guards Michigan's Tim Hardaway Jr., who scored 20 points in the Wolverines' win in the third-place game at the Maui Invitational.

Updated 10:52 p.m.

LAHAINA, Hawaii -- The bad news: The Michigan basketball team has to leave paradise.

The good news: The Wolverines will depart feeling pretty good about themselves.

Michigan got 20 points, four rebound and four assists from Tim Hardaway Jr. and a career-high 22 points from Zack Novak on Wednesday as the 15th-ranked Wolverines closed out the 2011 Maui Invitational in style with a 79-63 win over UCLA at the Lahaina Civic Center.

"I like, for the most part, how we competed under the bright lights," Michigan coach John Beilein said. "It doesn't get any brighter than (Maui) this time of year.

"And that's big for us."

The Wolverines earned third place in the event, winning two of three games, and moved to 5-1 on the young season.

After struggling to put an entire offensive game together Wednesday in an 82-75 loss to Duke, Michigan had little problem scorching the net against the Bruins.


Nick Baumgardner’s recap of Wednesday night’s Maui Invitational third-place game:

Michigan senior captain Zack Novak put on the best scoring display of his career, dropping in a career-high 22 points on 7-for-8 shooting as Michigan used a 13-0 first-half run and a 15-4 second-half spurt to dispatch UCLA.

Jon Horford had the best game of his Michigan career -- in the first half. With Jordan Morgan in foul trouble, Horford had a career-high 12 points to go along with seven rebounds in the first half. He didn't score or grab another rebound after the break, finishing 5-for-5 from the floor.

Freshman point guard Trey Burke made a name for himself in Maui, enough to impress the Twitter-verse, anyway. During halftime against UCLA, Burke's name was a trending topic in the United States. He finished with five points, five assists and three rebounds.

""I like how we competed under the bright lights, and (they) don't get any brighter this time of year. That's big for us, you don't know how people are going to (react) when there are teams and coaches you see on TV every day and, all of a sudden, that's you. I really liked what we saw."
-- Michigan coach John Beilein


Jon Horford's career half helps Michigan fend off UCLA's post players

Notebook:More than a leader, Zack Novak serves as go-to shooter in Maui win

Boxscore | Big Ten scoreboard
The Wolverines shot a blistering 61.7 percent from the floor as a team, 65.7 percent in the second half. Hardaway Jr. finished 8-for-13 from the field, while Novak went 7-for-8, 4-of-5 from 3-point range.

Sophomore forward Jon Horford added a career-high 12 points -- all in the first half -- to go along with seven rebounds.

"We just worked our offense," Novak said. "We got good shots, 49 shots for 70-some points, that's how we want to play.

"That tells me we were working the offense and getting good looks. When we do that, we've got pretty good shooters who can knock them down."

UCLA, meanwhile, dipped to 1-4 on the season, and never seemed to have enough of an answer for Michigan's sharp shooting -- as the Wolverines held the Bruins to a 41.8 percent shooting night.

"They hurt us every way imaginable," UCLA coach Ben Howland said.

Michigan seized control early as Hardaway dropped in seven points in the game's first seven minutes and Horford began to establish himself inside, leading to a 13-0 run to put the Wolverines up 19-8 at the 11-minute mark.

UCLA would claw back, though, getting as close as three after a Josh Smith putback closed an 11-5 spurt. Michigan extended its edge back out to as many as 10 after a pair of Horford foul shots, but UCLA would get a 3-pointer at the first half horn from Jerime Anderson to make it 38-31 at the break.

The Bruins would stay within striking range early in the second, pulling within five after a layup from Smith at the 12:51 mark, but from there, it would be all Michigan.

The Wolverines would spend the next four minutes on a 15-4 run, capped by a long 3-pointer from Hardaway, giving them their largest lead of 16 with 8:08 to go.

The lead would grow as high as 20 after a Novak free throw with less than two minutes to play.

"Coach Beilein and the staff do a great job of seeing how the defense is playing myself and the other guards," Hardaway said. "They draw up plays, and we just go out there and execute.

"We have to trust the offense and take our open spots."

Travis Wear led the Bruins with 16 points, while Smith and Anderson each added 12.

Evan Smotrycz finished his night with seven points and eight rebounds, as the Wolverines out-boarded UCLA 32-24.

Freshman point guard Trey Burke added five points and five assists for the Wolverines.

Michigan returns to action Tuesday when it travels to Virginia to take part in the Big Ten-ACC Challenge. It'll be Michigan's fourth game away from home in an eight-day stretch.

But given the progress his team made in Maui, Beilein didn't seem overly concerned.

"We're going to leave (Thursday), fly all Thanksgiving day and end up having like three different practices (Friday) to keep them awake," Beilein said. "And then, we'll take Saturday off and try and help our (football team) beat Ohio."

Nick Baumgardner covers Michigan basketball for He can be reached at 734-623-2514, by email at and followed on Twitter @nickbaumgardner.

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Thu, Nov 24, 2011 : 9:07 p.m.

I am not sure UCLA is going to be a good test as to how good this team is. UCLA is AWFUL. John Wooden is glad he is dead so he does not have to watch this team miss the NCAA and maybe even the NIT. I think the Memphis game shows a better picture. They are clearly not on the level of Duke and North Carolina at this point, but I think they have a shot to win against any team. Unfortunately, they have a chance to lose to a lot of teams they shouldn't.


Thu, Nov 24, 2011 : 2:01 p.m.

Great job by coaching staff & players. This is going to be a fun season, looking forward to it.

Silly Sally

Thu, Nov 24, 2011 : 11:12 a.m.

What would the ghost of John Wooden have to say about this? From 10 NCAA titles in the 1970s to this. I'd bet some Bruin fans now wish for the days of Gene Bartow or Craig Cunningham. Go Blue!


Thu, Nov 24, 2011 : 6:40 a.m.

..nice road trip Wolverines!.. Team Ball, Team Wins.. Happy Thanksgiving!! Go Blue! v


Thu, Nov 24, 2011 : 6:24 a.m.

What a great game and tourney for Michigan, a few observations: -We are indeed a wonderfully coached and tough team to play. -No way is Trey Burke only a 3 star player, he's 5 star all day long! What a stud, he can dribble and find open guys, he can penetrate, shoot well in FG's & FT's, great floor general and fearless, reminds me of Chris Paul of the Hornets. -Tim Hardaway and Zack and Stu, I mean what can you say, great all around player to go with 2 great shooting and gutsy leaders. -Our big men are well coached and young and will only get better. -I think this team will win at least 25 games this year and has a chance to be a top 4 seed in March, oh the madness. -It's so awesome to see the Football and B-Ball programs both becoming great again like it used to be, the next decade is gonna be fun, Go Blue!!!


Thu, Nov 24, 2011 : 4 a.m.

Beilein is one helluva coach! Have a great thanksgiving. Go Blue!