NEW YORK Michigan coach Tommy Amaker was worried about Oregon's offense. The Ducks should have concerned themselves with the Wolverines' attack.
Michigan (22-11) came out hitting on all cylinders Tuesday night and routed Oregon 78-53 in the NIT semifinals. The Wolverines will play Rutgers for the championship Thursday night after the Scarlet Knights defeated Iowa State 84-81 in overtime in the opener of the doubleheader.
''We got a great defensive effort against an outstanding offensive team,'' Amaker said. ''Things can be contagious either way. We made some shots and they didn't. We were fortunate, but we never forgot how explosive and dangerous they are.''
Led by Luke Jackson, the second-leading scorer in the Pac-10 this season, Oregon posed a defensive challenge for Michigan. The Ducks (18-13) averaged 75.7 points per game, third best in the Pac-10. But Amaker's team took over early, hitting 59 percent of its shots in the first half to build a 14-point lead. Michigan hit 54 percent for the game.
The Wolverines got consecutive 3-pointers from Chris Hunter, Daniel Horton and Lester Abram in an 11-0 run that put them in front to stay. Michigan converted eight of 12 3-point attempts in the first half.
By midway through the second half, the Michigan lead had stretched past 20 points and the Wolverines coasted after that.
Dion Harris led Michigan with 15 points while Horton had 14 and nine assists. Jackson led all scorers with 17 points, but Oregon shot just 34.5 percent.
''They played extremely well, especially on the offensive end,'' Jackson said. ''We just didn't do what we had to on defense and I thought their big guys did a good job dominating in the second half. They took the momentum and ran with it.''
Rutgers 84, Iowa State 81, OT
NEW YORK This was like old times for Quincy Douby and Curtis Stinson, two guards who had their share of showdowns on the concrete courts of New York City.
They staged one more Tuesday night on center stage at Madison Square Garden and when it was over, Douby had taken Rutgers into the championship game of the NIT with an 84-81 overtime victory against Iowa State.
The Scarlet Knights (20-12) will go for their first championship Thursday night against Michigan, a 78-53 winner over Oregon in the second semifinal.
There were moments in the game when it resembled a shootout between the two guards, who matched baskets throughout the second half. Both finished with career highs, Douby scoring 35 and Stinson 32.
''I prepared real well for the game,'' Douby said. ''I played against Stinson in prep school. He's from New York City and he's tough. He doesn't give up.''
Douby opened fast, hitting four 3-pointers in the first half. Stinson managed just three points and three shots in the first 20 minutes.
''When we were warming up, I felt good,'' Douby said. ''I hit my first few threes and I was in the flow.''
That added up to a 40-30 halftime lead for Rutgers, but Stinson brought Iowa State back in the second half.
''We didn't give up our lead,'' coach Gary Waters said. ''They took it from us.''
Stinson was the catalyst for the comeback, scoring 27 points in the second half and the first basket of the overtime. But then he fouled out with just under three minutes left in the extra period and the score tied at 79.
He called his teammates together before he left the court.
''I told them to play hard without me and be tough,'' Stinson said.
But without Stinson, the Big 12 freshman of the year who was playing with a heavily taped left hand, Iowa State had no firepower left and Rutgers prevailed.
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