The Hoosiers traveled to East Lansing, MI in hopes to stop their current losing streak at just two games but ran into a team just as desperate for a victory as they were. The No. 17 ranked Michigan State Spartans were also facing a two-game losing streak and took their home contest against the Hoosiers as a challenge to set their season straight. MSU defeat the Hoosiers in dominating fashion 76-61.
If there were any questions that Indiana fans were asking going into the contest with No. 17 Michigan State it was about the potential changes in the starting lineup. Coach Woodson made one of the first non-injury or suspension related changes to the starting lineup all season. Trey Galloway started in place of Parker Stewart while Xavier Johnson joined him in the backcourt. Miller Kopp, Trayce Jackson-Davis, and Race Thompson rounded out the starting five.
Jackson-Davis got the Hoosiers on the board first on Indiana’s first possession of the game to get things going in East Lansing.
MSU followed up the first basket with a 7-0 run, but it was Indiana who topped it with a 9-0 run themselves.
At the under-16 media timeout, the game was tied a nine a piece.
Things got chippy and physical early in this one. It seemed as if Michigan State had extra emotional motivation in this contest and it showed from the jump all the way until the whistle. One moment between Race Thompson and a MSU player as they both went to the ground stands out as an example of being physical.
A 16-6 run for the Spartans over an eight-minute span gave MSU a 21-15 lead with 7:31 remaining in the first half.
Foul trouble became a quick issue as Xavier Johnson, Miller Kopp, and Jordan Geronimo picked up two fouls in the first 15 minutes
After Michigan state grew their lead to double digits Indiana went on another 9-0 run over three minutes capped off by a Parker Stewart three, cutting the deficit to just one with 3:21 remaining in the first half.
After two technical had already been assessed earlier in the game, one to IU’s Miller Kopp and to Michigan States A.J. Hoggard, another was called on Jordan Geronimo for pulling a MSU player down as he fell to the ground with just 44 seconds remaining in the half.
At the break Indiana trailed the Spartans 37-30 behind poor shooting from the floor and the foul line. The Hoosiers shot 31% (11-for-35) from the field, 33% (4-for-12), and 40% (4-for-10) from the foul line. Jackson-Davis led IU with eight points, Thompson with nine rebounds, and Johnson with three assists. The Spartans were led by A.J. Hoggard with 11 first half points.
Basketball truly is a game of runs and an 8-0 run to start the second half from the Hoosiers gave them a one-point lead.
Race Thompson was Indiana’s best overall player throughout the entire game. With 16 minutes to go the Hoosiers “glue guy” picked up a double-double after knocking down a three to give him 12 points to go along with his ten rebounds. The jumper also game IU a one-point lead at 41-40.
At the under-15 media TO the Hoosiers trailed 45-41
With 14:43 remaining in the second half Xavier Johnson picked up his fourth foul. Mike Woodson then picked up a technical foul when questioning the call. It was the third technical foul on the Hoosiers in the contest
Michigan state went on an 11-1 run to match their largest lead of the game at ten points. The Hoosiers had trouble not only responding on the offensive end but accumulating multiple stops in a row on the defensive end which led to their deficit.
Turnovers and fouls were the Achilles heel of the Cream and Crimson against No. 17 Michigan State and in the second half it never felt close.
With four minutes left in the game the Hoosiers were behind 68-55.
With just over a minute remaining a very clear “Hoosier Daddy” chant came through the television broadcast as MSU continued to poor it on the Cream and Crimson as they lead by 18 after knocking down their fourth three of the half.
This one was rarely ever in question as MSU defeated IU 76-61 in East Lansing. Jackson-Davis led the way in scoring with 17 points, Thompson in rebounds with 14, and Johnson in assists with four. There were a combined 45 fouls and only 42 combined made field goals.
The schedule does not get any easier for the Cream and Crimson as they welcome the No. 14 Wisconsin Badgers to Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall on Wednesday Feb. 12 at 9:00 PM EST.