22 Spartans Battle Past Purdue in Annual Pink Game

(PHOTO:  MSU SID)
(PHOTO: MSU SID)

EAST LANSING, Mich. - For the first time since the 2014-15 season, all five Spartan women's basketball starters scored in double-figures as Michigan State battled past Purdue on Sunday at the Breslin Center in the annual Pink Game for Breast Cancer Awareness.

The Spartans have now have won three-straight games, improving to 16-5 this season and 6-4 in league play. Purdue has lost three-straight for the first time this season, falling to 15-9 overall and 6-5 in B1G play.

MSU has now won 15-straight home games, which is the longest since a streak of 20 games overlapping the 2009-10 and the 2010-11 seasons. This season, the Spartans are 12-0 at the Breslin Center.

Sunday was the first time since a Nov. 30, 2014 win over Miami (Ohio) that all five Spartans scored in double figures. MSU had two score 20 points led by sophomore forward Sidney Cooks and redshirt-junior guard Shay Colley. Junior guard Taryn McCutcheonscored 12 points all from beyond the arc, while freshman guard Nia Clouden and senior center Jenna Allen both added 10.

Purdue had four players in double figures led by Ae'Rianna Harris, who had a double-double with 20 points and 13 rebounds to go along with a game-high five blocks.

MSU jumped out to an 8-2 lead after four quick points by Cooks. The Spartans forced three Boilermaker turnovers in the first four minutes of play. Michigan State eventually stretched the lead to 21-14 after a McCutcheon trey with under a minute remaining in the period.

In the second stanza, Michigan State used great ball movement to score the first five points of the quarter, taking its first double-digit lead of the game, 26-16 at the 8:17 mark. MSU used a 6-0 spurt to take a 37-24 lead after the spin move by Colley. From that point, the Spartans maintained the double-digit lead for the rest of the half. Cooks and Colley kept the Spartan offense moving in the first half. Colley ended the half with 14 points, while Cooks had 10. Purdue was 0-for-8 from beyond the arc in the first half.

The third quarter belonged to the Boilermakers as Purdue scored eight of the first 12 points of the second half, to trim the Spartan lead to 43-34, leading to a MSU timeout with 7:18 left in the third quarter. The Boilermakers' 6-0 run and solid rebounding made it a five-point game, 43-38, with 6:09 left in the third. Purdue topped the 6-0 run with an 8-0 spurt to make it a one possession game, 48-46. The Spartans went over three minutes without a field goal before an Allen trey stopped the drought.

Michigan State came out of the gates strong in the fourth, scoring seven of the first nine points to take a 61-53 lead with 7:45 left. After a lengthy scoring drought, McCutcheon put the Spartans back in the scoring column with a 3-pointer after Purdue tied it was a pair of free throws. Michigan State took care of business late in the game, converting 8-of-10 free throws in the fourth period to secure the win. Despite the score being tied once, MSU never trailed.

The Spartans now hit the road to Iowa City take on No. 13/12 Iowa on Thursday, Feb. 7 at 9 p.m. (ET) on the Big Ten Network. Michigan State will then return home to take on Indiana on Monday, Feb. 11 at 7 p.m. at the Breslin Center.

Post-Game Notes vs. Purdue
• All five of MSU's starters posted double-figures for the first time this season ... This is the third-straight game that three or more starters have tallied double-digits ... The Spartans are now 6-0 when having five players post double-figures.

• It marks the first time since Nov. 30, 2014 that the Spartans had all five starters net double-figures in an 85-39 victory over Miami (Ohio), when Anna Morrissey (17), Tori Jankoska (16), Jasmine Lumpkin (13), Becca Mills (10) and Aerial Powers (10) posted double-digits.

• With junior guard Shay Colley and sophomore forward Sidney Cooks netting 20 points each on Sunday, it marked just the second time this season that MSU has had two players with 20+ points in the same game, joining the game vs. Iowa (Dec. 30) when Jenna Allen (20) and Nia Clouden (27) tallied 20 points.

• MSU's starting lineup of junior guards Shay Colley and Taryn McCutcheon, sophomore forward Sidney Cooks, freshman guard Nia Clouden and senior forward Jenna Allen was the third-straight time this season that the Spartans have started with that quintet.

• McCutcheon made her 21st start of the season and 84th of her career ... Allen recorded her 21st start of the season and 48th of her career ... Colley started for the 14th time this season and made the 36th start of her career ... Clouden posted her 21st start of the season ... Cooks made her third start of the season and 25th career start.

• Allen, McCutcheon and Clouden have started all 21 games this season and are joined by junior forward Victoria Gaines in playing all 21 games.

• The Spartans improved to 12-0 this season at home this season and have a 15-game home winning streak dating back to last year ... MSU now has the best home record in the Big Ten for overall games (12-0), while tying Rutgers and Iowa at 6-0 for best home mark in the B1G for conference games.

• MSU's 15-game home winning streak is the longest since a streak of 20 games overlapping the 2009-10 and the 2010-11 seasons.

• Michigan State's 74 points was MSU's third-straight game in the 70s after netting 77 in the previous two games and three of the previous four after a 77-60 victory at home vs. Illinois (Jan. 24) and winning at Michigan 77-73 (Jan. 27) as well as 77 in a 77-60 upset of No. 9 Maryland (Jan. 17).

• The Spartans have netted 70 or more points in all 12 home games this season as part of scoring 70+ points in 17 of the 21 games on the season ... Michigan State is 16-1 this season as part of 134 of its last 148 games when scoring at least 70 points and the Spartans are 152-23 under Coach Merchant when hanging 70 or more points on the scoreboard.

• With 21 assists Sunday, MSU is now 9-0 when dishing out 21 or more helpers, as well has 14-0 when recording more assists than its opponents.

• By limiting Purdue to 16.7 percent (3-of-18) from 3-point range on Sunday, the Spartans have held the opposition below 20 percent from behind the arc three times this season and they have all come in the last seven games behind a 9.1 percent vs. Minnesota (Jan. 9) and 16.7 percent vs. Maryland (Jan. 17).

• The Spartans have beaten Purdue in back-to-back meetings as part of six of the last eight match-ups and are now 14-7 vs. the Boilermakers under Merchant ... MSU is now 23-13 vs. Purdue in East Lansing, while closing the gap in the overall series to 40-33 in Purdue's favor.

• Senior forward Jenna Allen's 10 points Sunday gives her 989 for her career, just 11 points shy of becoming the 27th player in Spartan history to reach the 1,000 career points milestone.

• The 20 points scored by Cooks was one shy of her career high of 21 vs. Minnesota (Jan. 9) and was her second 20-point game of her career ... It was the fourth time in the last five games that Cooks posted double-figures and the 11th of the season and 26th time in her career.

• Colley's 20 points on Sunday was her fourth 20+ point outing of the season and eighth of her career ... It was also her seventh-straight double-figure game as part of 12th of the season and 26th of her career ... Colley dished out a game-high six assists and was the sixth game this season with five or more helpers.

• McCutcheon's 12 points was her sixth-straight game in double-figures as part of the 13th time this season and 34th of her career ... She netted four 3-pointers, marking the third game in a row with four triples as part of the fourth-straight and 11th game of the season with three or more treys.

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