INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- Freshman Dion Harris scored a career-high 23
points to lead Michigan to a 79-70 victory over Iowa in the Big Ten
Tournament quarterfinals on Friday.
Harris scored 15 of those points in the first eight minutes of
the second half as Michigan opened a 21-point lead before Iowa
mounted a comeback.
The Wolverines (18-10) advanced to play top-seeded Illinois in
Saturday's semifinals. The Illini defeated Indiana 71-59 on Friday
for their 11th win in a row.
Pierre Pierce had 28 for Iowa (16-12), which saw its chances at
an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament take a serious hit. The
fourth-seeded Hawkeyes were hoping a strong showing in the Big Ten
tournament would persuade the NCAA selection committee to let them
in as the fourth Big Ten team.
The depleted Hawkeyes, however, just didn't have enough to
compete with fifth-seeded Michigan.
Just six players saw significant for Iowa on Friday, and with
Glen Worley and Erek Hansen in foul trouble for most of the game,
the young, deep Wolverines wore them down.
Michigan led by seven at halftime, but Harris scored nine points
during a 14-2 run to open the second half. Lester Abram capped the
run with a 3-pointer that gave Michigan a 46-27 lead with 16:05 to
Harris hit two 3s in a row to give Michigan a 55-34 lead with
12:06 to play before Pierce and the Hawkeyes started to chip away.
Pierce scored 22 points in the final 10:30, including eight in a
row to pull Iowa within 67-63.
The Hawkeyes never got any closer, however, squandering a 12-2
lead to open the game.
Abram had 19 points and six rebounds for Michigan and Daniel
Horton added 14 points.
Greg Brunner had 10 points and 11 rebounds for Iowa.