Sunday, September 26, 2021

FINAL: Purdue 75, MSU 65, men's hoops hangs around but loses at Mackey

February 16, 2021
<p>Freshman guard A.J. Hoggard passes the ball during the Spartans&#x27; 55-54 loss to Purdue on Jan. 8, 2021.</p>

Freshman guard A.J. Hoggard passes the ball during the Spartans' 55-54 loss to Purdue on Jan. 8, 2021.

Photo by Devin Anderson-Torrez | The State News

MSU hung around with Purdue. They kept it close, they made some plays, but, in an all too familiar ending for MSU, they couldn’t pull through. 

MSU fell 75-65 at Mackey Arena on Tuesday night in a hard-fought, back-and-forth affair with the Boilermakers.

As Purdue grabbed a seven-point lead with less than 10 minutes remaining, the Spartans needed to respond.

And they did.

MSU held Purdue to a more than two-minute scoring drought in the minutes that followed, that was until Trevion Williams, who scored 28 points on the night, broke it with a dunk.

MSU would again keep it close until Williams determined their fate once again with another late dunk that secured the Boilermaker victory.

The effort from the Spartans looked more consistent, but their 44% shooting fell short of Purdue's 49%, marking their second straight loss in Big Ten play.

The Spartans will travel to Indiana on Saturday to take on the Hoosiers.

First half slump dooms MSU

In the first half, Michigan State fell back into the shooting woes that have cursed them lately. 

However, Purdue also struggled to pull away. As a team, Purdue went just 3-for-12 from deep, with none of those going down in the first half. Purdue ended with scoring 48 of their 75 total points in the paint. 

Purdue held a steady lead over MSU until two deep three’s from redshirt junior forward Joey Hauser gave the Spartans a one-point edge. From there the teams would battle back and forth, and Purdue would enter the half up 30-27. 

Michigan State stayed alive with a 36-28 advantage on the boards, 11 of those were tallied on the offensive glass to create opportunities for 18 Spartan second-chance points. 

While guards Foster Loyer (shoulder injury) and Rocket Watts (illness) were questionable heading to West Lafayette, Indiana, the two saw minutes throughout the game.

Watts played unselfishly, dishing out four of the team's total 12 assists while shooting 0-for-3 himself.

Sophomore forward Julius Marble II tallied 10 points on 4-for-6 shooting in the second half and played well, but was benched unceremoniously until nearly three minutes left in the game. He made aggressive moves in the paint early for the Spartans but found himself in late foul trouble alongside graduate student guard Joshua Langford and junior forward Thomas Kithier. The trio ended with four fouls each.

Junior forward Aaron Henry led the Spartans once again, scoring 15 points and dishing four assists.

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