DES MOINES, Iowa – Sometimes it was beautiful basketball. At times, it was one of Michigan's sloppiest basketball which has been playing for some time.
None of the mistakes prevented the Spartans from rising to their first Sweet 16 in 2015.
Cassius Winston had 13 points and nine assists, including a critical seven-point match in the second half, to number 2 at MSU on Saturday night at Wells Fargo for a 70-50 win over the number 10 Minnesota in the Leading East Region of the NCAA Tournament Arena.
Cassius Winston meets Minnesota's Michael Hurt in the first half. (Photo: Kirthmon F. Dozier, Detroit Free Press)
the Big Ten's first match ever since the NCAA tournament field was expanded to 64 teams in 1985 and the first intra-conference Matchup, since Izzo Wisconsin defeated in the 2000 final.
It is the fifth 30-win season of the Spartans and the 14th Sweet 16-bed under Izzo in his coaching career in the Hall of Fame. His 50th NCAA victory broke the fifth-highest in the history of the tournament, and Mike Krzyzewski of Duke, Roy Williams of North Carolina, former coach of North Carolina Dean and Jim Boeheim of Syracuse.
Observations from the Game:
[ I played for Tom Izzo at Michigan State. Here’s why I’m glad I did ]
Acquisition of Winston
It was the Big Six, which the Spartans led out of the first weekend for the first time in four years.
Together with Winston, Xavier Tillman, a second-generation professor, had helped a team with 14 points and six rebounds. Kenny Goins, Matt McQuaid, Aaron Henry and Nick Ward each scored nine points.
The Spartans committed 22 turnovers, leading to 26 Gopher points. Their defense and their rebound, however, helped to offset the sales.
Minnesota scored 30.5 percent for the match, scoring 2 out of 22 3-pointers who went 6 for 6 after half time. The Spartans finished the race with a 45-19 goal.
MSU already scored 20 points in the first half and top 17 points in the early second, following a pair of free throws by younger point guard Winston.
the Gophers (22-14), who played most of the game with Jordan Murphy (back) on the bench, took advantage of MSU's sales and picked up an 8-0 run by Amir Coffey, his fans Excited the three-and-a-half hour drive from Minneapolis in abundance.
Amir Coffey drives in the first half against Michigan State Aaron Henry. (Photo: Steven Branscombe, USA TODAY Sports)
Winston then showed why he was the Big Ten Player of the Year, probably the consensus of the first-team All-American team.
At the Gophers' deployment The MSU was a complete court case and intensified its defense in the half court. She tried to find rhythm. Winston tried to drive, hitting three Minnesota defenders with the shotgun down. He took a step back and rattled in to stop the drought.
At the other end, Winston chased a loose ball and hit his head against Minnesota's Gabe Kalscheur, with the freshman scoring his fourth foul. Winston emptied another sweater at the other end. Then Winston reached into his hands and pulled the ball out of Gocker's Brock Stull, ran away and collected a pass on the wing of Aaron Henry in the transition and buried a 3-pointer. MSU's lead rose to 16 as Minnesota called left with a time-out of 12:26.
The Spartans scored 57.1 percent for the game with 6:15 point shots.
• Box Score
After two days of noise, after Izzo and Henry's heated discussion got into a national conversation, the Spartans turned their attention to one of their best starts of the season.
Matt McQuaid dunks Saturday night. (Photo: Jeffrey Becker, USA TODAY Sports)
Nothing went awry early. Henry opened a 11-0 run with a dunk in less than a minute. These included shovels from four different MSU players as well as a plunge into the transition from Matt McQuaid.
Murphy – averaging 14.9 points and 11.3 rebounds – was on the grid, but the back injury he sustained on Thursday was limited to what he could do. He did not play the final at 15:51 and stood for a while the sideline to stretch. He took a shot and scored no goal.
The Spartans attacked with their big men. Ward, Goins and Tillman combined for 14 points over a period of 8 minutes, with the MSU increasing their lead to 31-11. This forced Minnesota to call for a break to suppress the 17-2 run of the Spartans.
[ Michigan State, where he belongs in the Sweet 16. The series is over sales problems
MSU's sales were closer to the Gophers. Minnesota converted 11 giveaways into 12 points in the first half, forcing five wins in the final 3:39. The Gophers finished half on an 8 -2 run and keep the Spartans scoreless for the last 4:46. Minnesota, however, was icy cold and went from 3 out of 2 to 16 and from a total of 7 to 32 when MSU took over 33:19 in the locker room. Coffey topped the Gophers with 27 points. 19659041] Contact Chris Solari at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @chrissolari . Read more about Michigan State Spartans and sign up for our Spartans newsletter.
MSU's sales were closer to the Gophers.
Minnesota converted 11 giveaways into 12 points in the first half, forcing five wins in the final 3:39.
The Gophers finished half on an 8 -2 run and keep the Spartans scoreless for the last 4:46. Minnesota, however, was icy cold and went from 3 out of 2 to 16 and from a total of 7 to 32 when MSU took over 33:19 in the locker room.
Coffey topped the Gophers with 27 points. 19659041] Contact Chris Solari at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @chrissolari . Read more about Michigan State Spartans and sign up for our Spartans newsletter.