East Lansing, MI
The Spartans were led by the amazing Matt McQuaid who had 14 points and five rebounds. Cassius Winston had 13 points and eight assists and the star of the game was Kenny Goins. He rounded out the Spartan double-digit scorers with a double-double of 10 points and 10 rebounds.
Tom Izzo said, “Another day in the Big Ten. I give Ohio State a lot of credit. We beat them the first time and they were going to come in here desperate. If you ask me the desperate trying to get in deserve to get in. I was totally disappointed with our effort in the first half. I thought the problem was that we weren’t guarding and got out-rebounded. At halftime everyone made the commitment we had to guard better. We didn’t shoot well all dy
Buckeye head coach Chris Holtmann said of the game, “Tough hard fought game. Give Michigan State credit. They made it difficult for us to score, especially in the 2nd half. Give Michigan State credit for how they defended throughout the game.”
The Spartans shot 38% from the field including 38% from the three. The Spartans shot a solid 83% from the free throw line. The Spartans had 17 assists on 21 baskets.
Nick Ward ended his game on the bench with his wrist and hand wrapped. Izzo said of the injury, “Nick couldn’t go the 2nd half, think he dislocated a finger, but I won’t’ know until he goes through the medical procedures.”
Izzo added of the stellar play of Kenny Goins, “I would say my two glue guys are him and McQuaid. Kenny may have been the reason that we won the game. Kenny never spent a lot of time on his game, but he started to a year ago. His shot now is as good as Cassius.”
The Spartans lost the battle of the boards 39-37. The Spartans had 10 turnovers. The Spartans had an impressive 8-2 lead advantage with block shots.
Holtmann added of the play of Goins, “He is a terrific player and I think that he is really undervalued. Maybe not by coaches. Incredible that he was a former walk on, that is an incredible walk on there.”
Izzo played all eight players including two of his five freshmen. Aaron Henry finally made teams pay for backing off of covering him. He had eight points and five rebounds, but looked for his shot all night.
The Spartans return to Big Ten action against Rutgers this Wednesday at 6:30 PM back in East Lansing. That game can be seen on BTN.
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