Gophers Run out of Gas, Lose to Michigan in OT
ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman made up for missing two free throws late in regulation when he failed to take advantage of an opportunity to seal a victory.
Abdur-Rahkman bounced back with a tiebreaking three-point play with 3.8 seconds left in overtime and finished with 17 points as No. 24 Michigan held on to beat Minnesota 76-73 Saturday.
"I'm very proud of the way he responded," said Moe Wagner, who had 16 points and 10 rebounds for the Wolverines.
Michigan (19-6, 8-4 Big Ten) needed the extra time to win because they struggled to shoot from the field and the line. And they failed to slow down a pair of guards.
The short-handed Golden Gophers (14-11, 3-9) didn't trail until early in the second half and were in a position to end their longest losing streak of the year because freshman Isaiah Washington had a season-high 26 points and Nate Mason scored 22 points, including a 3-pointer with 5.3 seconds left that tied the game.
Mason was just short on a shot from about 30 feet that would have forced a second overtime.
"I'm proud of our guys for their effort," Minnesota coach Richard Pitino said. "To play in front of a sold-out crowd when you're down two of your top six, no team in college basketball can sustain that. We're not feeling sorry for ourselves. We're not making excuses. We've got to play as close to perfect as we possibly can in order to win. We were close. We know we can play with anybody if we play the right way."
Michigan's Zavier Simpson made a layup and a 3-pointer — after missing his first seven attempts beyond the arc — to give his offensively challenged team a four-point lead with 2:50 left in the extra period.
The Gophers tied the game with 11 seconds left, but couldn't keep Abdur-Rahkman from making the game-winning play on a hard-charging, spinning drive for a layup on which he was fouled by Jamir Harris.
Simpson scored 15 and Charles Matthews had 13 points for the Wolverines, who have won four straight at home. Michigan made just 44 percent of its shots from the field and was 8 of 32 from the 3-point line.
Minnesota's Jordan Murphy fouled out in overtime with 12 points and six rebounds.