|Michigan guard Tim Hardaway, Jr. (10) dunks above Towson guard Kris Walden during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Monday, Nov. 14, 2011, at Crisler Arena in Ann Arbor, Mich. (AP Photo/Tony Ding)|
Michigan scores first 21, beats Towson 64-47
ANN ARBOR, Mich.—Tim Hardaway Jr. scored 15 points, and No. 17 Michigan started the game on a 21-0 run before cruising to a 64-47 victory over Towson on Monday night.
Freshman Trey Burke scored 13 points in his first career start, and Evan Smotrycz had 13 as well. The Wolverines (2-0) also started the second half with six straight points to take a 43-16 lead.
Robert Nwankwo led Towson (0-2) with 16 points.
The game was part of the Maui Invitational, although the result wouldn't have affected the tournament's schedule. Michigan is part of a set field of eight teams that will play in Hawaii next week. Towson is one of four teams playing preliminary games against Hawaii-bound teams. Those four teams also will play their own mini-tournament in Tennessee next weekend.
Michigan began the season Friday with a 59-33 victory over Division II Ferris State. The Wolverines finished that game on a 21-1 run, and against Towson, they picked up right where they'd left off.
Burke was supposed to start the opener but came off the bench instead after being late to a walkthrough. He was in the starting lineup Monday and made a pair of early 3-pointers.
Towson returns only one letter winner and no starters from 2010-11. The Tigers looked increasingly confused on offense in the first half, settling for bad shots and struggling to take care of the ball. A layup by Smotrycz made it 19-0, and Towson called a timeout.
Zack Novak added another layup for Michigan before Erique Gumbs made a shot from the top of the key for the Tigers, ending their scoring drought and earning a sarcastic cheer from the Michigan fans with 10:34 remaining in the half.
Burke made a 3-pointer from the corner just before the halftime buzzer to make it 37-16.
The 5-foot-11 Burke has the difficult task of replacing NBA draft pick Darius Morris at point guard for Michigan. Morris, who was 5 inches taller than Burke, was a terrific playmaker, but only once in his two seasons with the Wolverines did he make more than two 3-pointers in a game.
Burke made three in the first half Monday.
Towson lost its opener 100-54 to Kansas and was out of this game early, but Nwankwo scored nine points in the first half. Deon Jones scored 12 for the game, and Marcus Damas added 11.
Michigan coach John Beilein put forward Jordan Morgan in the starting lineup after Jon Horford started the opener. Morgan scored six points and Horford had four.