East Lansing, MI
The Spartans were led by Cassius Winston who had 26 points and eight rebounds and seven assists. Xavier Tillman had 13 points and seven rebounds. Kenny Goins had 12 points, eight rebounds, and six assists and finally, Nick Ward was the only other Spartan in double digits. He actually had 11 points and six rebounds.
Tom Izzo said, “Our fans were unbelievable. The whole day was my greatest day at Michigan State. During the game, they tried to keep us in it, even though we didn’t try to keep ourselves in it. We didn’t play very well, I didn’t coach very well and it wasn’t officiated very well.”
Hoosier head coach Archie Miller was said after the game, “Tremendous win for our team. For the first time in a while, we really shared the ball well. We were fortunate with Michigan State free throw shooting tonight, but we will take it.”
The Spartans shot 45% from the field including 43% from the three. The Spartans shot an abysmal 36% from the free throw line and that is where they lost the game. They went only eight of 22. The Spartans had 23 assists on 29 baskets.
Izzo said of the free throw shooting going eight of 22, “It was really eight of 25. Three of those were front ends of a one and one. We addressed it all year. We are shooting 75% and sometimes when it rains it pours. We got what we deserved. The free throw shooting I don’t think we deserved that, but the effort related rebounding we deserved that.”
The Spartans lost the battle of the boards 43-40. Disappointingly, the Spartans had 10 turnovers.
Izzo played nine players including three of his five freshmen. Aaron Henry remained in the starting lineup and had a disappointing four points and four rebounds in thirty minutes.
Miller added, “Great atmosphere here. It always is here. It is one of the greatest atmospheres in college basketball and with Gameday, I told our guys that is why you want to come to Indiana. To play in games like this here.”
The Spartans return to Big Ten action against the Fighting Illini of Illinois on Tuesday at 7:00 PM in Champaign. The game is on ESPN2.
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