In a very slowed down, drawn-out game, the No. 3 MSU men’s basketball team trails Indiana at the half, 28-27.
The half saw nearly as many combined turnovers, 15, as made shots, 18, and there were a total of 21 fouls called.
The Spartans got off to a typically slow start, letting the Hoosiers score the first five points of the game.
Junior forward Branden Dawson got the Spartans on the board and sophomore guard Travis Trice tied it up when he hit a tradition three-pointer four minutes in.
The Spartans were hampered under the basket for the fourth straight game as senior forward Adreian Payne did not dress sue to a sore foot.
Sophomore forward Matt Costello was forced to guard Noah Vanleh for most of the half due to fouls on both sophomore forward Gavin Schilling and junior forward Alex Gauna.
The Breslin Center and the Izzone continually tried to get into the game, but there was no energy in the crowd or on the court.
With nearly six minutes left, Troy Williams made a layup to put Indiana up by two, then committed a technical foul. Senior guard Keith Appling went 1-2 from the line, but Indiana still was in control.
The Spartans tried to come back, led by Dawson, who scored six of his team-high eight points with under five minutes to play in the half, but they couldn’t get into a rhythm.
Vonleh was the leading scorer for Indiana, netting nine points. He also led on the glass, grabbing six rebounds.
The normal Hoosier-killer for MSU, sophomore guard Gary Harris, sat on the bench for most of the half with two fouls. He scored just four points.