Wednesday, December 13, 2017
Sports

Final unbeaten falls

COLUMBUS, Ohio — A ball that rattled around the rim and bounced out separated Michigan from its first No. 1 ranking in more than 20 years.

Point guard Trey Burke's stepback jumper with 17 seconds left went down then came out, leaving the No. 2 Wolverines — who went in as the only unbeaten team in Division I — on the wrong side of a 56-53 loss to No. 15 Ohio State on Sunday.

A day after No. 1 Duke lost to North Carolina State, the Wolverines were in prime position to ascend to the top for the first time since November 1992. Instead, they went home with their first loss, also depriving them of the best start in school history.

"Some go in and some don't," said Burke, a sophomore who happens to be from Columbus and is friends with several of the Buckeyes. "I thought it was going in. It looked good. I think it went in and then came out."

Michigan (16-1, 3-1 Big Ten) trailed 52-50 and had the ball as the seconds ticked away. Probably most of the capacity crowd of 18,809 knew that Burke, a star at Columbus' Northland High where he was a teammate of former Buckeye star Jared Sullinger, would likely take the last shot.

Aaron Craft — who Michigan coach John Beilein said was as good as any defender he had seen — prevented Burke from driving. His path blocked, Burke jumped back then launched the shot.

"We were up two, so that makes it a little more challenging for me," said Craft, selected as the league's top defender a year ago. "Fortunately enough for me, that shot he took rimmed in and out. I kind of turned around (and saw) we grabbed the rebound."

Lenzelle Smith grabbed the rebound. A moment later he was fouled and hit two free throws. Craft, who had struggled on offense most of the season, then made two more free throws to more than offset Burke's circus 3-pointer with a second left.

The Buckeyes (13-3, 3-1) did most of their offensive damage early, following Burke's opening 3-pointer with a 16-0 run that started and ended with baskets by Deshaun Thomas. From there, it was a matter of whether Ohio State — which blew a late lead at Duke in November — could hold off the Wolverines, who went in averaging 81 points with four starters in double figures.

Burke had 15 points for Michigan, which was trying to exceed the 1985-86 team's 16-0 start.

NO. 22 MICH. ST. 66, NEB. 56: Derrick Nix made two free throws with a minute left and scored 17 to help the host Spartans (14-3, 3-1 Big Ten) pull away for their third straight win.

EVANSVILLE 71, NO. 23 WICHITA ST. 67: Colt Ryan had 24 points and eight assists for the host Aces (11-6, 4-1 MVC), who made seven free throws over the final 1:25 and capitalized on a season-high 22 turnovers by the Shockers.

MIAMI 54, MARYLAND 47: Kenny Kadji scored 14 and Trey McKinney Jones 12 for the host Hurricanes (12-3), who are 3-0 in the ACC for the first time.

Women: Vols survive Gators in overtime

GAINESVILLE — Meighan Simmons scored 27, Bashaara Graves added 17 points and 15 rebounds and No. 9 Tennessee held on 78-75 in overtime against Florida, which lost leading scorer Jennifer George to a dislocated right shoulder in the first half. The Vols (13-3, 4-0 SEC) snapped the Gators' 15-game winning streak at home and won for the 44th time in 48 meetings. UF (13-5, 2-2) rallied from a nine-point deficit in the second half.

NO. 18 FSU 86, NO. 24 MIAMI 65: Leonor Rodriguez scored 21 and Natasha Howard had 20 for the Seminoles (13-3, 3-2 ACC), who have won 10 of their past 11 against the Hurricanes (12-4, 3-2) in Tallahassee.

NO. 1 BAYLOR 82, NO. 17 KANSAS 60: Brittney Griner had 33 points and seven rebounds for the Bears (14-1, 4-0 Big 12), who won their 12th straight and handed the Jayhawks (11-4, 2-2) their first loss in 10 home games.

NO. 2 NOTRE DAME 71, RUTGERS 46: Skylar Diggins scored 15 despite being benched briefly after angrily protesting a foul and getting a technical, and the Irish (14-1, 3-0 Big East) won their sixth conference home opener in the past seven seasons.

NO. 4 DUKE 73, WAKE FOREST 44: Elizabeth Williams scored 18 to lead the visiting Blue Devils (15-0, 5-0 ACC) to their 38th straight victory in the series.

NO. 7 CAL 67, NO. 5 STANFORD 55: Gennifer Brandon had 14 points and 12 rebounds for the visiting Golden Bears (13-2, 3-1 Pac-12), who snapped an 81-game conference winning streak by the Cardinal (14-2, 3-1).

NO. 6 KENTUCKY 69, MIssouri 43: DeNesha Stallworth scored 17 for the visiting Wildcats (16-1, 4-0 SEC), who extended their school-record winning streak to 15 games.

NO. 8 PENN ST. 80, NEB. 58: Alex Bentley scored 19 and led a swift backcourt trio that created havoc for the host Lions (13-2, 3-0 Big Ten), who won their seventh straight.

NO. 10 MARYLAND 74, VA. TECH 45: Alyssa Thomas had 26 points and 18 rebounds for the visiting Terps (13-3, 4-1 ACC), who won for the ninth time in 10 games.

NO. 11 UNC 79, GA. TECH 58: Megan Buckland scored 19 to lead five players in double figures for the host Tar Heels (17-1, 5-0 ACC), who won their 10th straight.

NO. 13 GEORGIA 42, NO. 18 S.C. 40: Jasmine Hassell scored 19 for the host Bulldogs (15-2, 3-1 SEC), who held off the Gamecocks (14-3, 2-2) while posting the fewest points in a win in school history.

NO. 14 UCLA 85, WASH. 68: Jasmine Dixon tied her season high with 13 points and added 11 rebounds for the host Bruins (13-2, 4-0 Pac-12), who overcame 16 first-half turnovers to win their sixth straight.

NO. 20 TEXAS A&M 78, AUBURN 56: Kelsey Bone had 19 points and 10 rebounds to lead the host Aggies (13-5, 3-1 SEC).

NO. 21 OKLA. ST. 64, TEXAS 52: Toni Young had 19 points and seven rebounds for the visiting Cowgirls (13-2, 2-2), who have won two in a row after losing their first two Big 12 games.

NO. 23 COLORADO 56, UTAH 43: Jen Reese scored 11 for the visiting Buffaloes (13-2, 2-2 Pac-12), who beat the Utes for the second time in six days.

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