With 5:35 left in the second half, IUPUI Senior Eboni Jamssens threw a lob pass to the post. Her teammate, freshman Krima Davies, barely got a hand on it to save it from going out of bounds before controlling it and putting it in for two points. Six minutes earlier, the Jaguars were looking at a 21-point deficit. With the basket, they were down just eight points.

But those would be the last points IUPUI (1-7) would score, as Michigan (4-4) clamped down on defense and went on to win Saturday night’s game 68-48 at Crisler Arena.

The play marked a turning point for Michigan, which started the second half ahead 41-19 but was struggling to seal the win.

“We got a little lackadaisical on defense,” Michigan freshman Becky Flippin said. “We were trying to live off of our points that we had in the first half.”

After Davies’s basket, the Wolverines woke up on both ends of the court. In addition to allowing no points on defense, Michigan scored 12 points in those final five minutes, almost as many as they had scored in the first 15 minutes of the second half.

Michigan and IUPUI traded baskets to begin the half, but the Jaguars got no closer than 18. With 12:34 left, IUPUI went on an 8-0 run to get within 12, thanks in large part to junior Anne-Marie Tupper –— who scored five of her team-leading 14 points in that stretch. Tupper’s 3-pointer with 11:36 left forced Michigan to call a timeout.

Out of the timeout, IUPUI senior Jessica James added two more points before Flippin hit a long 3-pointer, ending the run and adding to her career-high 12 points.

Even after Flippin’s three-ball, the Jaguars did not quit and slowly whittled the lead down to eight before Michigan stopped them in their tracks.

“I really thought we did a good job of trying to regather,” Michigan coach Cheryl Burnett said. “That took us about three possessions and a timeout to re-remind us of the things we needed to do.”

The game was a huge turnaround for the Wolverines, who just days earlier had a disappointing loss to cross-town rivals Eastern Michigan.

IUPUI started the game in a 2-3 zone — a defense that plagued Michigan in its previous game against the Eagles. But the Wolverines came out ready and had much more success breaking the defense versus the Jaguars.

Michigan scored 30 points in the paint, a great improvement from the 16 it scored on Eastern Michigan. Freshman Katie Dierdorf once again played a large part in getting inside to disrupt the zone, scoring all 10 of her points from around the basket.

“(Dierdorf) really posts up well when we reverse the basketball,” Burnett said. “We can really find her in the post, and it gives us a lot more flexibility.”

The Wolverines started the game running, thanks to a fast start by Flippin. After hitting a 3-pointer to begin the game, she stole the ball two possessions later and took it coast-to-coast for two points. From there, Michigan would not look back, holding on to the lead for the entire game.

The Wolverines first big run came with 8:51 left in the first half. Dierdorf received a pass down low from freshman Janelle Cooper and quickly layed it in for two. On the next Wolverine possession, Dierdorf — with her back to the basket — caught a pass from freshman Krista Clement and quickly turned around to bank the ball in, putting Michigan up 23-13.

Within the next three minutes, the Wolverines raced out to a 19-point lead, aided by seven points from senior Tabitha Pool. Pool totaled 16 points and pulled down seven rebounds while dishing five assists.

By the end of the half, Michigan had a 21-point lead, although at one time the lead was as great as 25.

“We lacked intensity, defensively, and were shooting flat on the offensive end,” IUPUI coach Shann Hart said. “When you can’t make shots, you get pretty much what we got in that first half.”

In the first half, Michigan held the Jaguars to just 21.4 percent shooting for the half and created 14 turnovers — which the Wolverines turned into 21 points.

Michigan held the Jaguars’ top two scorers, Davies and junior Kia Hayes —who came into the game averaging 15.9 and 10.1 points per game, respectively — to a combined 10 points on the night.

“I think, just constantly, we’re trying to increase the pressure,” Clement said. “Every day, coach is stressing to really get out and deny, and today I think we proved that we could”

Michigan hopes that its play in the first half is what it will bring to tomorrow’s game against Western Michigan.

“We really started looking at some of the right places, which is the thing I am appreciating,” Burnett said. “We still had some ugly possessions, but we are trying to do the right things. And then we had some really good possessions, so that was really a good feel to gain some confidence.”

 

Movin’ on up

In her fourth season at Michigan, senior Tabitha Pool finds herself in the record book in multiple categories. Here’s a glance at the records she will chase for the rest of her season.

POINTS

1. 2,066 Diane Dietz, 1978-82

2. 1,714 Jennifer Smith, 2000-04

3. 1,647 Trish Andrew, 1989-93

17. 1,063 Orethia Lilly, 1982-86

18. 1,052 Tabitha Pool, 2001-

 

REBOUNDS

1. 928 Trish Andrews, 1989-93

2. 851 Stacey Thomas, 1996-2000

3. 827 Pollyanna Johns, 1994-98

7. 747 Abby Currier, 1977-81

8. 631 Tabitha Pool, 2001-

 

BLOCKS

1. 367 Trish Andrew, 1989-93

2. 136 LeeAnn Bies, 1999-2003

3. 118 Patrice Donovan, 1980-82

10. 60 Pollyanna Johns, 1994-98

11. 55 Tabitha Pool, 2001-

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