MINNEAPOLIS — Daniel Oturu shook off an injury and had a career game to help Minnesota take down another ranked opponent.
Oturu scored a career-high 30 points and the Gophers went on a late 11-0 run to beat No. 19 Michigan 75-67 on Sunday.
The sophomore center had 20 points in a dominant first half, and he continued his roll with six quick points after the break. But with 14:35 remaining, he hit the deck hard while fighting for a rebound. He stayed on the floor for nearly five minutes, clutching his left shoulder as a hush fell over the crowd.
Oturu received treatment on his shoulder in the locker room and returned to a standing ovation after missing about three minutes of action.
“It felt like it slipped in and out, so I was in a lot of pain,” Oturu said of his shoulder. “But regardless of what injury or whatever I was feeling, I was going to go back out there because I needed to help my team win this game. That was the most important thing.”
Zavier Simpson had 19 points and nine assists for Michigan (11-5, 2-3). Franz Wagner made four 3-pointers and scored 17 points for the Wolverines, who led by 11 early but gave up big runs to Minnesota at the end of each half.
“We started off good and had great energy, and then kind of lost that,” Wagner said. “The game is not won in 10 minutes, not won in the last 3 minutes. It’s won the whole game. You’ve got to play solid all 40 minutes.”
Marcus Carr had 21 points and 12 assists for Minnesota (9-7, 3-3 Big Ten), which knocked off No. 3 Ohio State at home on Dec. 15. Alihan Demir scored 13 points and helped shore up Minnesota’s inside game when Oturu was out. Demir and Carr played key roles down the stretch as the Gophers pulled away after a back-and-forth second half.
Eli Brooks hit a 3-pointer with 3:20 to play to put Michigan ahead 65-64. But Oturu answered on the other end with a basket in the low post to give Minnesota the lead for good with 3 minutes left.
Michigan only had eight turnovers on the day, but two came at the worst possible time. After Minnesota regained the lead, the Wolverines turned it over on their next two possessions. The Gophers made them pay with a bucket in the paint by Demir and two free throws by Carr.
Then, after Jon Teske’s short hook rolled out, Oturu grabbed the rebound and the Gophers got a corner 3-pointer from Payton Willis to take a 73-65 lead with 1:02 to play.
“Unfortunately, we didn’t get a chance to capitalize on any of our offensive sets toward down the stretch,” Wolverines coach Juwan Howard said.
Michigan took an early lead and was in control for much of the first half. A 3-pointer by Teske gave the Wolverines their biggest lead at 30-19 with 5 minutes to play in the half.
But the Gophers closed on an 11-1 run that was bookended by two baskets from Carr, the latter coming with 29 seconds to play. Minnesota’s defense then forced a miss on a desperation 3-pointer at the buzzer as Michigan took a 31-30 lead to the locker room.
“I loved the defense,” Minnesota coach Richard Pitino said. “Towards the end when we needed to get a stop, I thought we communicated well and we blocked out. . That’s a very good offensive team and we held them to 65 points.”
Carr was 2-for-7 shooting in the first half, but he came to life after the break. After hitting two free throws and a driving layup, he made a 3-pointer and then fed Oturu for an alley-oop dunk to put the Gophers up 45-41.
Oturu was injured shortly thereafter.
“He came back and gave his team a big lift in the second half with his energy,” Howard said. “The crowd got really into it. The kid is special. He’s not only done it to us, but he’s been playing very well throughout the season thus far.”
POINT GUARD BATTLE
The game featured two of the top point guards in the Big Ten, and they both took care of the ball while making big contributions on offense. Simpson played all 40 minutes and had two turnovers, while Carr also played 40 minutes without a turnover.
Michigan: The Wolverines lived and died from beyond the arc. They made five of their first six 3-pointers before cooling off, finishing 10 for 28 from long range.
Minnesota: The Gophers struggled to find offense from anyone other than Oturu in the first half. Through the first 15 minutes, Oturu had scored 16 of Minnesota’s 19 points. He finished the first half 9 for 12 from the floor, while his teammates went 4 for 16.
Michigan: Two of the top three offenses in the Big Ten will square off on Friday when the Wolverines travel to Iowa. It’ll be a rematch of the conference opener, which Michigan won 103-91.
Minnesota: The Gophers will look for their sixth straight home win when they host Penn State on Wednesday.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Despite four players in double figures, Minnesota (11-5, 1-4 Big Ten) was unable to complete a late comeback in a 74-71 loss Sunday at Illinois (10-6, 1-4).
Freshmen Sara Scalia and Jasmine Powell were the top scorers for Minnesota, while senior Jasmine Brunson and junior Gadiva Hubbard also reached double figures.
After scoring 20 points in her past three games combined, Scalia busted out for 16 points Sunday thanks to three 3-pointers, and she matched a career high with seven rebounds and 37 minutes played.
Powell’s 15 points were the most she had scored since putting up 16 against Milwaukee on Nov. 14, while Brunson’s 14 points were one off a season high. Hubbard’s 12 points were aided by a game-high five assists.
The Illini had their biggest lead of the game at 68-56 with 4:28 to play but the Gophers wouldn’t go down without a fight.
Scalia made a three and Brunson followed with a jumper to cut the lead to seven with 3:20 to go. After a pair of made free throws for Illinois’ Petra Holesínská, who had a game-high 28 points, Hubbard got it to within six on a 3-pointer.
After Holesínská and Powell traded more free throws, Brunson hit a 3-pointer in the corner, stole the ball on the ensuing possession and fed Powell for a layup to get Minnesota within one at 72-71 with 1:11 to play.
Illinois’ Brandi Beasley then missed a 3-pointer and the Gophers missed a pair of shots on the other end before getting the ball out of bounds underneath their own basket. Unfortunately, the inbounds pass was stolen and Beasley made a pair of free throws to push the lead back to three at 74-71 with 11 seconds to go.
Minnesota had a chance to tie it up but Powell’s 3-pointer at the buzzer hit the rim.
In addition to the four players in double figures, the Gophers also got extended minutes and solid performances from freshmen Klarke Sconiers and Barbora Tomancova, who were both appearing in their seventh games of the year, as well as senior Masha Adashchyk.
Sconiers set career highs for rebounds (5) and minutes (19) and was one off her career high in points (6). Meanwhile, Tomancova had a career-high nine rebounds after having nine rebounds on the season coming into the contest.
Adashchyk tallied eight points and matched a personal best with four rebounds.
Minnesota is back home Thursday when it faces Iowa at 7 p.m.
EAST LANSING, Mich. – Scott Reedy scored the eventual game winner on the first shot of the game, and that was all Jared Moe would need to work with as the freshman goaltender earned his first career shutout on Saturday night in a 2-0 win over No. 20 Michigan State at Munn Ice Arena.
Behind a 28-save performance from Moe, the Gophers earned a series split with the Spartans and picked up the program’s first shutout in over a year (Eric Schierhorn in a 3-0 win over St. Lawrence on Nov. 17, 2018). The freshman netminder improved to 4-4-1 on the season and ended the weekend with 52 saves on 53 shots including a relief appearance on Friday night. Moe backstopped an aggressive push from Michigan State including a third period breakaway attempt and an extended 5-on-3 chance for the Spartans to close out the second period.
Minnesota (8-10-4 overall, 3-5-4-3 Big Ten) jumped out to an early lead when Reedy tallied his team-best 10th goal of the season at 1:40 in the first period, scoring on the first shot on goal of the night for either team. Reedy’s fourth goal in the last four games was set up by defenseman Ben Brinkman, who has now tallied two points in the last three games after being held without a point in the first 18 games of the year.
The performance was bookended by an unassisted empty-net goal from Ben Meyers as the freshman forward tallied his fourth goal of the year at 18:32 of the final frame.
Michigan State (11-10-1, 7-4-1-0) had 20 saves from John Lethemon, who fell to 11-7-1 on the year.
The Gophers were outshot 28-22 on the night while going 2-for-2 on the penalty kill and 0-for-3 on the power play.
ST. CLOUD, Minn. — Sydney Scobee earned a 28-save shutout and the Golden Gophers scored three first-period goals as the No. 2 University of Minnesota women’s hockey team cruised to a 3-0 victory and WCHA series sweep over St. Cloud State on the road at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center on Saturday afternoon.
Minnesota (19-1-3, 11-1-2-1 WCHA) got off to a quick start and never looked back. Madeline Wethington scored her second goal of the series just 3:39 into the game before Alex Woken doubled the lead midway through the opening frame with her 11th goal of the season. Taylor Heise then converted on the power play for the Gophers’ first power-play goal since Nov. 15, 2019.
Wethington and Taylor Wente (2a) led the way on the score sheet with two points each while Scobee’s shutout marks her NCAA-leading sixth shutout of the season.
St. Cloud State (4-16-3, 0-14-0 WCHA) was led by goaltender Emma Polusny’s 37-save effort as the Gophers outshot the Huskies 40-28 for the game.