staff, March 10, 2013

Keith Appling scored 16 points and Gary Harris added 12 to lift No. 10 Michigan State to a 71-61 win over Northwestern on Sunday night. The Spartans (24-7, 13-5) were eliminated from Big Ten title contention early in their game when Indiana beat Michigan, and Michigan State struggled to put away the undermanned Wildcats.

Northwestern (13-18, 4-14) rallied from a 13-point first-half deficit, tying the game at 51 before the Spartans recovered.

Kale Abrahamson scored 16 points for Northwestern, which has lost eight straight.


Alex Olah drives for dunk:

Branden Dawson hammers home putback:

Adreian Payne elevates for two-hander:

Adreian Payne slams home alley-oop:

Gary Harris rises for early flush:

FINAL: Keith Appling scored 16 points and grabbed four rebounds to lead No. 10 Michigan State to a 71-61 win over Northwestern on Sunday at the Jack Breslin Student Events Center in East Lansing. Gary Harris had a quality shooting game, nailing 5-of-8 shots from the field and scoring 12 points. Michigan State (24-7) shot 66 percent from the field (25-of-38 and went 15-of-20 from the charity stripe as a team (75 percent). Michigan State also got solid contributions from Derrick Nix (10 points) and Adreian Payne (11 points). Kale Abrahamson scored 16 points, grabbed four rebounds, and knocked down 6-of-11 shot attempts for Northwestern (13-18) in a losing effort. Alex Olah was 4-of-6 from the floor and chipped in 10 points for the Wildcats. Northwestern has now lost eight games in a row.

HALFTIME: Branden Dawson scored four points and grabbed five rebounds to help lead No. 10 Michigan State to a 33-26 lead over Northwestern at the end of the first half. The Wildcats led 5-2 when the Spartans went on an 11-0 run to take an eight-point lead. Michigan State, which racked up 10 assists on 15 baskets, received seven points from Keith Appling and six from Derrick Nix. The Spartans put the clamps on Northwestern's three-point game (3-of-12, 25 percent from long range), while the Wildcats shot 67 percent in the first half on two-point field goals. Reggie Hearn and Kale Abrahamson scored six points apiece to pace Northwestern.

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