COLUMBUS, Ohio – Guided by a combined 45 points from freshmen Tori Jankoska and Aerial Powers, the Michigan State women’s basketball team bounced back to defeat Ohio State, 82-68 this afternoon at Value City Arena. The Spartans, who won their first four Big Ten road games for the second time in program history, improve to 13-7 overall and 5-2 in the conference.
Jankoska, who slid into the starting lineup, tied her season-high with 25 points, shooting 7-for-13 from the field, 5-for-7 from the 3-point line and 6-for-8 from the foul line. Powers posted a stat line of 20 points, four rebounds, four assists, four steals and two blocks in only 28 minutes.
The Buckeyes (13-10, 3-4) started quick, leading 9-2 in the first couple minutes, and held onto that margin, 20-13 midway through the half. Michigan State followed with a 13-0 run over the next 4:45 to take a lead it would not give up. OSU would get back within one (33-32) with 1:42 until halftime, but the Spartans closed the half with the last four point to go into the break up 37-32.
An early 11-2 run by the Spartans in the opening minutes of the second half, pushing the advantage to 14 points (50-36) with under 15 to go. The Buckeyes could get no closer than eight the rest of the way, as MSU pushed its lead up to 16 points on a couple occasions late.
Senior Annalise Pickrel had her third double-double with 10 points and a game-high 10 rebounds, while also adding four assists and two blocks. Classmate Klarissa Bell added 11 points.
Redshirt junior Madison Williams made a huge impact on the defensive side, blocking a career-high seven shots, while tying a career high with eight rebounds in a career-high 19 minutes.
The Spartans shot 47.2% from the field, including 9-for-19 (47.4%) from 3-point.
Michigan State returns home to host Wisconsin on Thursday night at 7 p.m.
- Today marked the first win for the Spartan senior class against Ohio State. MSU’s last win against the Buckeyes was on Feb. 21, 2010.
- It is the second time in program history (1986-87) that MSU won its first four Big Ten road games.
- MSU’s 82 points were the second-most allowed by OSU this season, and the most since the second game of the season (88 vs. Florida Atlantic). The Buckeyes entered the game allowing only 62.3 points per game.
- It was the ninth time this season that the Spartans scored at least 80 points, tying for the third most in program history, and are the most since 1999-00.
- Jankoska’s 25 points were also tied for the ninth-most by a Spartan freshman in a single-game.
- Jankoska also tied for the second-most 3-pointers in a single-season by a MSU freshman (41).
- Powers had her fifth 20-point game, tying for the most 20-point games by a Spartan freshman.
- MSU blocked a season-high 11 shots, the most by the Spartans since blocking 12 vs. Oklahoma State on Nov. 28, 2009 and the most in a Big Ten game since Dec. 28, 2006 (13 vs. Indiana).
- Branndais Agee’s six points, five rebounds and 16 minutes were all Big Ten career highs for her.
- Powers’ eight free throws made were a season-high. She went 8-for-9 today.
- Michigan State improves to 13-0 this season when shooting more free throws than its opponent.
- MSU has won 44-straight games when leading with five minutes left, and 93 of its last 94 opportunities.
- The Spartans have won 74 Big Ten games over the last seven seasons, tying Ohio State for the most in the conference.
- In Coach Merchant’s seven seasons, MSU is now 35-20 in Big Ten road games, the most wins in the conference.
- MSU played today without starting point guard Kiana Johnson, who did not make the trip with the team to attend to personal matters.