Still Injured Spartans Find a Way To Win Again!Â They Down the Gophers 87-75 Without Adreian Payne!
East Lansing, MI
Michigan State won an overtime thriller over improving Minnesota today here at the Breslin Center 87-75.Â Michigan State improves to 15-1 (4-0) and the journey continues.Â Senior star C Adreian Payne did not dress for the contest.
Gopher Coach Richard Pitino said, â€œVery difficult to beat a team when they make 32 free throws to our 19.Â It was free throws and rebounds that cost us that game.Â That is one of the best teams in the country on their home court.â€Â MSU won the rebounding battle 44-32.
The Spartan continue to win without their team being 100% and the guts and maturity that each contest drags out of them certainly will make them better come March.Â Today the Spartans had a 10 point deficit with 1:46 to play in the first half and five at the half, but the maturity to fight back continues to be the story.
Izzo said of the game, â€œIâ€™m happy, Iâ€™m happy.Â We look very lethargic.Â We didnâ€™t play very well.Â Minnesota did play well.Â There were enough bad things to get mad about, but not anymore.Â I am going to have a party tonight and you all are invited.â€
Kenny Kaminski continues to play well and improve.Â He had 15 points (all on three point shots) and continues to improve on defense as well.
Pitino said of Kaminski, â€œHe changed the way we guarded certain things and made some big time shots.Â When you get a kid with that height who can shoot the ballâ€¦he made a lot of big time plays and big time shots.â€
Izzo said of his improving star, â€œKaminski did do a good job.Â Kaminski made some shots.Â If he continues to improveâ€¦he can shoot it with anybody.Â We do have to do more than score on one end.Â He did give us a lift at a time when we werenâ€™t very good.â€
Keith Appling had 24 points, three assists, two steals and four rebounds.Â It was another great night for the Spartans senior leader.Â Branden Dawson had six points, but added 10 rebounds.Â Denzel Valentine had 10 boards, nine points and four assists and Matt Costello had eight rebounds and seven points.
The Spartans next test comes on Wednesday at Northwestern.Â That game tips at 7PM EST and you can see it on BTN.