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Michigan solves Syracuse zone for halftime lead

Updated: 2013-04-07T03:19:40Z

By BLAIR KERKHOFF

The Kansas City Star

— Michigan went to its bench to take a 36-25 halftime lead on Syracuse in the Final Four.

The Wolverines got 16 points from its non-starters, including four three-pointers. Michael Albrecht and Caris LeVert each had two, as Michigan fired away over the Orange's tight 2-3 zone.

Point guard Trey Burke, who has collected several national player of the year honors at the Final Four, had only three, but the bucket was a dagger: a deep three-pointer from about the spot he delivered overtime in the Wolverines' Sweet 16 victory over Kansas.

The shot provided the halftime margin and was Michigan's largest lead of the half.

Michigan had steamrolled some of the college game's best defenses during the NCAA Tournament, and it succeeded against the team that's on record pace for scoring defense in the tournament with opponents about 46 points.

But with Burke getting Michigan into its half-court sets, shooters knocking down jumpers and the Wolverines able to get the ball at the rim, the offense flowed.

Mitch McGary, who has become a force throughout the NCAA Tournament, had six points and seven rebounds.

C.J. Fair was the Syracuse's early spark with nine first-half points. But he was getting little help. Point guard Michael Carter-Williams had two points and one assist.

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