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    Northwestern Drops Big Ten Opener to No. 2 Michigan, 94-66

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM James Montgomery III had a steal and a breakaway slam in the second half for the Wildcats.
    NUSPORTSDOTCOM
    James Montgomery III had a steal and a breakaway slam in the second half for the Wildcats.
    NUSPORTSDOTCOM

    Jan. 3, 2013

    Box Score |  Quotes |  Photo Gallery 

    WATCH: Game Highlights | Postgame Press Conference (AA)

    Site: Evanston, Ill. (Welsh-Ryan Arena)
    Score: No. 2 Michigan 94, Northwestern 66
    Records: NU (9-5), Michigan (14-0)
    Next NU Event: Sunday, Jan. 6 -- at No. 9/13 Minnesota (Minneapolis, Minn.), 6 p.m.

    EVANSTON, Ill. - Northwestern was unable to overcome a hot start by No. 2 Michigan as the Wildcats dropped their Big Ten opener 94-66 Thursday evening at Welsh-Ryan Arena.

    Jared Swopshire and Kale Abrahamson led four NU players in double figures with 11 points apiece. Alex Olah and Tre Demps each contributed 10 points.

    The Wildcats played the contest short-handed as they were without the services of leading-scorer Reggie Hearn, in addition to All-Big Ten performer Drew Crawford.

    Watch Game Highlights
    The Wolverines, who improved to 14-0 on the season, scored the first 10 points of the game to race out to an early advantage they wouldn't relinquish. Sophomore point guard Trey Burke spearheaded the effort, scoring 13 points in the first five minutes of the contest.

    Michigan's advantage eventually grew to 20-4 before Abrahamson hit a 3-pointer and Alex Marcotullio scored on a layup following a steal. However, the Wildcats were unable to chip away at the deficit.

    Tim Hardaway Jr. connected on all four of his attempts from beyond the arch in the opening half as the Wolverines went 8-for-12 from 3-point range over the opening 20 minutes of play as they led 51-30 at the break.

    Back-to-back triples by Swopshire and Marcotullio early in the second half got Northwestern within 53-36, but Michigan responded with 10 straight points to put the game out of reach.

    The Wildcats, who entered the game as the nation's leader in assist percentage, assisted on 19 of their 24 field goals in the contest with Dave Sobolewski and Olah dishing out five apiece.

    Burke finished with a game-high 23 points for Michigan, while Hardaway added 21.

    Northwestern returns to action at 6 p.m. Sunday as it travels to Minneapolis to take on No. 9/13 Minnesota.

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