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Archive for Monday, February 23, 2004

Michigan stuns 12th-ranked Badgers

Wolverines dismiss talk about tourney hopes; Duke ends slide

February 23, 2004

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— Lester Abram sat in front of his locker and insisted on deflecting any discussion about the topic of the day: Michigan's NCAA Tournament chances.

Abram scored 17 points to lead the Wolverines to a 71-59 victory over No. 12 Wisconsin on Sunday, their first win over a ranked opponent. Michigan beat No. 13 North Carolina State on Dec. 2, but the Wolfpack were not ranked at the time.

Many believe Michigan (15-8, 6-6 Big Ten Conference) kept alive its hopes for an NCAA Tournament bid with the win, but Abram didn't want to say what he thought about the issue.

"I don't know, man," Abram said. "I try not to talk about the NCAA Tournament. We don't know what it is going to take to get us in, so coach (Tommy Amaker) doesn't want us worrying about it."

Devin Harris led the Badgers (17-6, 8-4) with 18 points on just 5-of-20 shooting, and Mike Wilkinson had 14 points and nine rebounds. Wisconsin has lost two straight for the first time in 13 months, when it lost on the road to Michigan and Illinois.

The Badgers fell a game behind first-place Michigan State -- which plays at Michigan on Tuesday -- in the Big Ten. They have won the past two regular-season titles.

"We just play," Wisconsin coach Bo Ryan said. "We don't worry about the standings. I don't think you look at the standings and play any differently."

Wisconsin had won six of seven before losing at Illinois and to the Wolverines.

No. 3 Duke 86, Maryland 63

Durham, N.C. -- J.J. Redick scored 20 points, and Duke ended its two-game losing streak. Shelden Williams had 18 points and 11 rebounds for the Blue Devils (22-3, 11-2 Atlantic Coast Conference), who avoided their first three-game losing streak in eight seasons. Duke has won 40 straight games at Cameron Indoor Stadium. John Gilchrist scored 14 points for the Terrapins (13-10, 4-8), who lost their third straight. Duke had won 18 straight games and reached No. 1 for the seventh consecutive season before losses at North Carolina State and Wake Forest.

No. 13 N.C. State 77, Washington 72

Raleigh, N.C. -- Marcus Melvin scored 16 points, and Scooter Sherrill added 13 for the Wolfpack, who overcame an eight-point second-half deficit to improve to 14-0 at home this season. Ilian Evtimov added 12 points for the Wolfpack (17-6) in the first-ever meeting between the schools.

No. 15 Wake Forest 80,

No. 18 Georgia Tech 76

Atlanta -- Justin Gray scored 26 points, and Wake Forest beat a ranked team for the third straight game. The Demon Deacons (17-6, 7-5 Atlantic Coast Conference) stunned the Yellow Jackets (19-7, 6-6) with an early 16-0 run, then withstood a comeback that tied the game at 71 with 31/2 minutes left.

Late Saturday

No. 20 Southern Illinois 66, Hawaii 62

Carbondale, Ill. -- Darren Brooks scored 18 points, including a three-pointer with 28 seconds left, leading Southern Illinois past Hawaii late Saturday.

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