ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — Reggie Bass drilled a 3-pointer with 11 seconds left and Central Michigan knocked off in-state rival Michigan 63-61 in the final non-conference game for both schools on Thursday night.
The teams met for the first time in five years. Michigan is 22-4 all-time against the Chippewas, but Central Michigan now has won three of seven meetings since 2002.
Jesse Zarzuela’s 3-pointer with 16:14 left to play put Central Michigan in front, 36-35, and the Chippewas played with the lead for most of the remainder of the game. Dug McDaniel tied the game at 60-60 on two free throws with 3:14 left and Hunter Dickinson put the Wolverines in front with a free throw with 2:27 left, but Jett Howard missed a 3-pointer with 35 seconds left and Kobe Bufkin missed from long distance with 4 seconds left after Bass connected to give CMU the lead.
Central Michigan has struggled with injuries throughout its non-conference schedule and played its eighth game without preseason All-Mid-American Conference point guard Kevin Miller. The victory was the team’s first in seven games against a Division I opponent without its leading scorer.
Zarzuela led Central Michigan (5-8) with 19 points and six rebounds. Bass hit 4 of 11 from beyond the arc and contributed 16 points and seven rebounds. Brian Taylor added 12 points, four rebounds and three assists. The Chippewas held a 44-32 advantage on the boards and pulled down 17 caroms off the offensive glass.
Bufkin led Michigan (7-5) with 16 points. Dickinson knocked down 7 of 10 from the free-throw line and added 13 points. Howard hit 3 of 11 from distance and contributed 12 points, while McDaniel finished with 10 points and four assists.
Michigan opens Big Ten Conference play when it plays host to Maryland on New Year’s Day.
Central Michigan opens MAC play at home Wednesday against Miami (OH).