FINAL: Bridges scores career-high 33 as Spartans fall short at home against Purdue
The last time MSU met with Purdue, the stakes were much larger. It was the 2016 Big Ten Tournament championship game and the Spartans came away victorious for head coach Tom Izzo’s fifth conference tournament title.
Nearly a year later, the No. 20 Boilermakers (17-5 overall, 6-2 Big Ten), would strengthen their bid with another conference win Tuesday, defeating the Spartans (12-9 overall, 5-4 Big Ten), 84-73.
With the win, Purdue extended its winning streak to three games, while MSU has dropped its third consecutive game. Sophomore forward Caleb Swanigan earned his NCAA-best 17th double-double with 25 points and 17 rebounds.
Fifth-year senior guard Eron Harris put the Spartans on the board early with a deep triple, moments later sophomore forward Caleb Swanigan tied the game at 5 points apiece with a 3-point basket from the top of the key.
The Spartans went on to hit their next four field goals, including a contested 3-pointer from freshman shooting guard Josh Langford to beat the shot-clock and take a 15-11 advantage into the first media timeout with 13:31 left in the first half. Back-to-back scores from Purdue’s Carson Edwards would tie the game, 15-15.
Freshman forward Miles Bridges hit his second triple on the next possession, forcing the Boilermakers to play catch-up for the next four minutes. Purdue tied the game at 25 after Ryan Cline hit two consecutive 3-point baskets. Cline’s
Purdue chipped away at MSU’s lead with a 10-0 run of their own to take a
Harris made the first bucket for MSU in the second half with another triple, Swanigan did the same for Purdue. The Boilermakers briefly retook the lead, but an upward pass from junior guard Lourawls “Tum Tum” Nairn Jr. was met with a one-handed slam for Bridges. The dunk from Bridges gave the Spartans the 46-44 lead and prompted Purdue to burn a timeout.
Turnovers and foul trouble for Purdue kept the Spartans in the game through the early parts of the second half. With 10:58 to play, Purdue found itself in a 6-0 run as the Spartans missed its next four shots from the field to take an eight-point lead over the Spartans.
In the next series of sequences, Purdue would go scoreless for the next 2:33 as Bridges connected on two straight scoring chances in the paint. Trailing by six with 6:50 to play, Bridges connected on a pair of free throws to cut Purdue’s lead to four.
Ward would get called for his fourth foul, bringing Swanigan to the line with 6:21 left to play. Swanigan found the net on both attempts, giving Purdue the seven-point lead. A triple from the top of the key by Bridges cut it down to four with 4:30 to play.
Purdue would break open a double-digit lead with wide-open 3-point baskets on two straight possessions, forcing Izzo to call timeout. The Boilermakers held the lead, 75-65 with 3:50 to play.
Redshirt-sophomore forward Kenny Goins would foul out with 3:08 to play. His foul sent Vincent Edwards to the line, connecting on both, to extend Purdue's lead to 11. As a team, the Boilermakers went to the free-throw line 24 times, finding the net on 21 attempts.
Purdue also added 18 points on six Spartan turnovers.
Bridges led the way in scoring for MSU, collecting 17 before halftime and finished with a game and career-high 33 points. As a team, the Spartans converted on 51
The Spartans will return to action Sunday, hosting the University of Michigan. Tipoff against the Wolverines is scheduled for 1 p.m.