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Central Michigan stuns Michigan on late 3-pointer

Dec 29, 2022; Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA;  Central Michigan Chippewas forward Ola Ajiboye (11) and guard Reggie Bass (1) celebrate after defeating the Michigan Wolverines at Crisler Center. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Jesse Zarzuela scored 19 points, Reggie Bass scored the go-ahead 3-pointer with 11 seconds remaining and Central Michigan upset Michigan 63-61 in Ann Arbor on Thursday night.

Bass finished with 16 points and seven rebounds. Brian Taylor added 12 points for Central Michigan (5-8), which snapped a four-game losing streak.

Kobe Bufkin led Michigan (7-5) with 16 points and Hunter Dickinson had 13. Jett Howard added 12 points and Dug McDaniel chipped in 10.

Both teams were playing for the first time since Dec. 21.

Howard got off to a strong start, scoring eight points in less than six minutes as Michigan scored the first seven points. Bass made a layup to cut the Wolverines’ advantage to 15-11 seven minutes into the contest.

Neither side scored for over three minutes until Taylor knocked down a jumper. A dunk by Dickinson and bucket by McDaniel stretched the Wolverines’ lead to 23-15.

The Chippewas then finished the half on a 12-5 run, leaving Michigan clinging to a 28-27 lead. Taylor had two baskets and Zarzuela had a three-point play during that stretch. Bass briefly gave CMU the lead with a 3-pointer but the Wolverines’ Joey Baker answered with another long ball.

After Michigan nudged the lead to six again early in the second half, Central Michigan had a 7-0 spurt capped by Zarzuela’s 3-pointer.

Bass’ 3-pointer with 12 minutes to go gave the Chippewas a 45-44 edge. That began another 7-0 spurt, finished off by another Zarzuela basket.

Zarzuela’s bucket with five minutes left gave Central Michigan a 58-55 lead. Bufkin tied it with a three-point play.

Dickinson made a free throw with 2:27 left to give Michigan a 61-60 edge.

After four empty possessions, the Chippewas called a timeout with 30 seconds left. Bass drained his decisive 3-pointer, his fourth of the day. Bufkin then missed a 3-pointer and Dickinson missed a putback on Michigan’s final possession.

This was the first matchup between the two programs since November 2017. Michigan is now 22-4 all-time against Central Michigan.

–Field Level Media