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Horton shines late for Michigan

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) -- Daniel Horton went from horrendous to
tremendous in less than a week in the opinion of his coach.

Horton's three-point play with 20.7 seconds to go lifted
Michigan to a 61-60 win over Notre Dame (No. 19 ESPN/USA Today; No. 20 AP) on Saturday.

Chris Thomas had two chances in the last 10 seconds to score a
go-ahead basket for the Fighting Irish, but he missed the first and
Brent Petway blocked the second attempt.

Horton scored 15 points, all in the second half, for the
Wolverines (4-3).

After losing at No. 4 Georgia Tech by 31 on Tuesday, Michigan
coach Tommy Amaker said his backcourt play was horrendous.

"I was kind of upset because he had never really done that, but
he was right," said Horton, Michigan's point guard. "And I'm glad
he said it."

Horton missed his only shot in a scoreless first half, then
scored 11 of his 15 points in the last 5:44.

"He thrives in that type of environment," Amaker said. "If
you want to find somebody that wants to be in that situation, who
wants to take the big shots and has proven he can make the big
shots, then you want Daniel Horton."

Dennis Latimore led the Fighting Irish (3-1) with 18 points,
more than twice his average since transferring from Arizona, and
Torin Francis scored 12.

"It's a tough loss because it felt like we were in control in
the second half after digging a hole in the first half," Latimore
said. "We broke down mentally toward the end. I made a bad foul on
Horton's last play. I should've wrapped him up better."

Thomas, who was averaging 14 points a game, had just two points
on 1-of-13 shooting.

Thomas said watching the Wolverines lose their previous three
games -- to Georgia Tech, Providence and No. 21 Arizona -- led Notre
Dame to underestimate them.

"The last three games they kind of lulled us to sleep. They
tricked a lot of people," said Thomas, who had 10 assists and
eight rebounds. "That was my biggest fear coming into the game. I
knew that their guys could play, and I knew they were going to come
out with a lot of intensity at their own home court.

"It's just when you watch them and they're getting pounded by
30, you kind of get hypnotized by that."

Michigan led by 11 late in the first half, but trailed by 10
midway through the second half.

An 8-0 run got the Wolverines back into the game, and Horton's
fearlessness led them to victory. He made 3-pointers on consecutive
possessions before making a three-point play on a layup and free
throw.

"I'm a very confident player. Sometimes it hurts me, sometimes
it helps me," Horton said. "Today, it helped me."

Petway's game-saving block came after he missed the front end of
a 1-and-1 opportunity at the free throw line.

Michigan freshman Ron Coleman had 11 points after scoring just
eight in the first six games. Horton's backcourt mate, Dion Harris,
had 10 points.

The Irish won their first three games against Harvard,
Indiana-Purdue-Fort Wayne and Charleston Southern.

"I learned a lot about our group," Notre Dame coach Mike Brey
said. "This is the first time we've been in this situation with
this nucleus. We're disappointed we didn't close it out because we
certainly had chances at the end of the game to finish it."

While Michigan and Notre Dame are rivals in football, they
hadn't played a regular-season game on the basketball court since
1993.