NCAA Game Summary - Minnesota vs. Northwestern
(Thursday, March 8)
Final Score: Minnesota 75, Northwestern 68 (OT)
Indianapolis, IN (Sports Network) - Andre Hollins scored a career-high 25 points as he helped guide Minnesota to a 75-68 overtime win against Northwestern in the opening round of the 2012 Big Ten Conference Tournament at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
Also scoring in double figures for the 10th-seeded Golden Gophers (19-13) were Austin Hollins and Rodney Williams with 12 points apiece and Julian Welch 11. Elliott Eliason contributed with a game-high 10 rebounds.
The seventh-seeded Wildcats (18-13) were paced by JerShon Cobb who registered a personal high of his own with 24 points, sinking all three of his three- point attempts and also pulling down eight rebounds on the day. John Shurna chipped in with 21 points as he converted 5-of-8 on the perimeter but just 2- of-4 at the free-throw line.
The Gophers led by double digits, 15-5, at the 13:40 mark of the first half, but the team allowed Northwestern to knock down 9-of-20 shots behind the three-point line in the period and that provided the Wildcats with a 36-34 edge at the break. Cobb was a perfect 5-of-5 shooting from the floor in the half as he finished with 14 points for Northwestern, with Shurna adding 12 points.
Hollins led the way for Minnesota with 16 points over the first 20 minutes of action as he knocked down 4-of-5 beyond the arc.
With the game tied for the 12th time at 61-61, Hollins had a chance to put Minnesota on top but his jumper with the clock winding down failed to convert. Northwestern grabbed the rebound and rushed the ball back down the floor and even though he had time to gather himself just outside of the three-point line, Dave Sobolewski threw up an awkward attempt at the buzzer that bounced off the rim.
In the overtime period the Wildcats, who were trying to work their way towards their first-ever appearance in the NCAA Tournament, made just a single field goal and consistently missed shots close to the basket as they ended up bowing in the seven-point decision.
Despite not having Ralph Sampson III in the lineup due to a knee injury, Minnesota still won the battle of the boards, 44-29, in order to combat 14 turnovers.
With the victory the Gophers head to the quarterfinals on Friday where they will clash with the second-seeded Michigan Wolverines.
03/08 20:25:19 ET