Big 1st half lifts Michigan to 102-47 rout of Charlotte
PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas (AP) Michigan coach John Beilein thought his team took some poor shots at crucial times during its loss to Connecticut in the opening-round of the Battle 4 Atlantis.
The Wolverines responded by not missing much of anything in their matchup with Charlotte.
Michigan set three tournament records in its 102-47 rout of the 49ers Thursday in the consolation bracket. Moritz Wagner had career-high 19 points. Caris LeVert added 13 points as four Wolverine players reached double figures.
The Wolverines notched new benchmarks for points by one team and for margin of victory.
The 61 percent that Michigan shot from the field was also a new standard for the tournament.
''I'm proud of our team, the way we responded after last night's disappointment,'' Michigan coach John Beilein said. ''For us to bounce back and play the way we did today was a good sign and good step in the right direction.''
The Wolverines (3-2) led by 22 points at halftime and played their reserves for much of the second half after their lead ballooned above 40. Michigan scored at will throughout, knocking down 12 3-pointers.
It was a breakout game for Wagner, a freshman from Berlin, Germany. He had just four points on the season entering the night. He connected on eight of his nine field goal attempts.
''Sometimes I wake up and think it's a dream,'' Wagner said. ''Germany is a different world. Being here that was kind of a dream for me to play NCAA basketball. And now I see myself on the court, and can actually contribute to the team.''
The Wolverines dictated the pace in the first half, quickly going in front by double digits.
Michigan's defense was equally impressive, holding Charlotte without a second-chance point. It also converted Charlotte's seven first-half turnovers into 13 points.
Andrien White led Charlotte (1-4) with nine points.
49ers coach Mark Price said there was little to salvage from his team's performance.
''Not much to say about, other than that was a disaster,'' Price said. ''Michigan just laid the wood to us real good.''
Michigan: Had 53 bench points. ...Scored 20 points off 10 turnovers for the game.
Charlotte: Was outrebounded 44-27. ...Connected on just 15 of 58 field goals.
REHAB TIME: Michigan's Spike Albrecht, who continues to work his way back from double offseason hip surgery, played 10 minutes in the second half after emptying his bench. Though Beilein had said previously that the plan was to rehab him and bring him along slowly, he played him out of necessity in an effort not to burn the redshirt years of some of his freshmen.
LESS LEVERT: One thing Beilein especially liked about Thursday's effort is that it didn't totally revolve around LeVert as the primary scorer. ''We can't stand around and watch Caris the whole game,'' he said. ''We want Caris to be very, very aggressive. But we don't also want the ball to stick either...I think everybody loves watching Caris do what he does. At the same time we're a better team when he's running a play and being a player.''
MOVING ON: Charlotte senior forward Bernard Sullivan said the only way to move past what he called an ''embarrassing'' effort on Thursday is for the team to turn the page as quickly as possible. ''It's one that's gonna sting for a little while,'' he said. ''But we gotta try to put this one behind us because we've got a game tomorrow. The best we can do is to learn from it and let it build a fire in us not to lie down, but to stand up.''
Michigan plays Texas in the fifth-place game on Friday.
Charlotte plays Washington in the seventh-place game Friday.
Follow Kyle Hightower on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/khightower