Michigan bolsters NCAA resume with first win at Indiana since 2009

BLOOMINGTON — For Michigan, along with its NCAA Tournament hopes, a week of firsts now stands as a definitive moment for the ongoing 2016-17 season.

Now it’s a matter of where the Wolverines go from here.

To start the week, Michigan had lost five straight against Michigan State. Most of the players on the roster had never beaten the Spartans. U-M picked up that first win over the Spartans on Tuesday in Ann Arbor.

Then came Sunday. Michigan had lost 17 of its last 18 games at Indiana, including six straight, a streak dating back to John Beilein’s first season at U-M.

Well, you can cross that off the list, too.

Michigan walked into Assembly Hall on Sunday as a three-point underdog and walked out with a 75-63 win.

The Wolverines built a 10-point halftime lead and never let go. They rode stirring performances from Derrick Walton Jr. and D.J. Wilson to the team’s first road win of the season. Michigan was 0-6 in true road games before Sunday.

Now the Wolverines are 16-9 overall and 6-6 in the Big Ten. Their NCAA Tournament resume is growing stronger.

Walton, averaging 19.7 points, 6.6 rebounds and 3.9 assists over his last seven outings, was brilliant again. The senior point guard finished with 25 points, five rebounds and four assists.

Midway through the second half, when Indiana cut the Wolverines lead to 38-32, Walton delivered a key and-1. Later, when it was closing time — Michigan leading 61-53 with under three minutes left — he hit a leaning jumper that hung on the rim for some added drama.

That said, the game was always close, but never on the brink of slipping away. Much of…