(NEW YORK) — The NIT Season Tipoff marked the first test for No. 4 Michigan, and the Wolverines passed – but just barely.
Michigan hit eight straight free throws to ice the game and overcame a poor outside shooting performance to down Pittsburgh 67-62 in the tournament semifinals at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday night.
“The coaches do a good job of putting us in those scenarios,” Trey Burke said. “When it comes to game time we just tell each other to win the game, shoot with confidence.”
The Panthers (4-1) got a three-pointer from Tray Woodall to close to within three with under a minute remaining, but Michigan made their free throws to escape. “They outrebounded us by 11,” Pittsburgh coach Jamie Dixon said. “It was obviously a very close game, tight game. I think this is a good game for us. We got some good performances.”
Burke scored 17 while Tim Hardaway Jr. chipped in 16 for the Wolverines (4-0), who will face Kansas State in the tournament final on Friday after the Wildcats defeated Delaware.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Eliott C. McLaughlin, CNN Newswire
Jill Martin, CNN