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5 Observations: Michigan State defeats Mississippi State to advance in NCAA Event

Michigan State men’s basketball is off and running in the NCAA Tournament, as the Spartans played some of their best basketball of the entire season in a 69-51 win over Mississippi State in first round of ‘the Big Dance’. The Spartans came out red hot in this one, connecting on eight of their first 11

5 Observations: Michigan State defeats Mississippi State to advance in NCAA Event

Michigan State males’s basketball is off and working within the NCAA Event, because the Spartans performed a few of their greatest basketball of the whole season in a 69-51 win over Mississippi State in first spherical of ‘the Massive Dance’.

The Spartans got here out purple scorching on this one, connecting on eight of their first 11 shot makes an attempt, together with 4 3-pointers in opposition to the most effective perimeter defenses within the nation. MSU constructed a 20-8 lead via the primary 9 minutes of the sport.

After Mississippi State compelled a number of turnovers and scored the sport’s subsequent seven factors to shut to inside 5, the Spartans settled again in on the offensive finish behind the guard trio of A.J. Hoggard, Tyson Walker and Jaden Akins. Michigan State sandwiched a pair of layups from Hoggard and Walker round an Akins’ triple, and rebuilt its result in 29-18 with slightly below three minutes left within the half.

Mississippi State’s Josh Hubbard hit a pair of 3-pointers to maintain the Bulldogs shut, however Malik Corridor closed the primary half with a floater off-glass to offer the Spartans a 31-24 lead heading into their locker room.

Exterior of a pair ugly turnovers from Hoggard early within the second half, Michigan State was dialed in once more to begin the body. The Spartans outscored Mississippi State 12-5 within the first 4 minutes of the half for his or her largest lead of the sport, 43-29. The Bulldogs did all they might to attempt to keep shut the remainder of the best way, however Michigan State remained in full management the remainder of the best way and wore Mississippi State down. The Spartans constructed a lead as massive as 18 factors when Davis Smith, son of MSU legend Steve Smith, hit a deep 3-pointer because the shot clock wound down on Michigan State’s ultimate possession.

Michigan State advances to the second spherical of the NCAA Event for the seventh consecutive time. The Spartans are highly-likely to face the West area’s No. 1 seed, North Carolina, within the Spherical of 32. It will likely be a tall process for Michigan State, because the Tar Heels can have a homecourt benefit with the sport being performed in Charlotte. However first, listed here are 5 takeaways from as we speak’s win…

1.) Sharing the rock

Michigan State’s ball motion was excellent as we speak, and it began from the opening tip. The Spartans first eight baskets all got here off an help, and that was a development which might proceed for the remainder of the sport. As a crew, MSU totaled 14 assists on 27 made baskets this afternoon. The results of that ball motion was one of many Spartans’ greatest capturing performances of the season, as they shot 50% for the sport.

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Hoggard turned the ball over too many occasions as we speak, however he made up for it by main the crew with eight assists. Walker handed out a pair of assists, whereas Carson Cooper, Mady Sissoko, Tre Holloman and Steven Izzo all had one, with Izzo’s approaching that ultimate triple from Smith.

2.) Let the 3-ball fly

Mississippi State had the most effective perimeter defensive groups within the nation, and the Bulldogs have been proficient at limiting opponents’ 3-point baskets. Michigan State did not care about any of that, nonetheless, as they shot the ball with confidence all through the afternoon and went 10-of-23 from lengthy vary (43.5%).

Walker and Akins led the best way right here for the Spartans, with the fifth-year senior going 3-for-6 from deep and the junior hitting on 3-of-8 makes an attempt. Hoggard, Holloman, Smith and Xavier Booker every added one triple every for the Spartans. Michigan State is among the higher 3-point capturing groups within the nation, however does not shoot as many as they should. There’s stability to all the things, however the Spartans ought to let the ball fly extra on this NCAA Event, and in the event that they join on the clip they did as we speak, this crew turns into harmful.

3.) Three Spartans in double-figures

As has been the case many of the season, Walker led Michigan State in scoring with 19 factors, and the fifth-year senior was regular and environment friendly all through the afternoon, capturing 7-of-12 from the ground. We bought what we anticipated from Walker, however Akins’ sport was the one that ought to have Spartan followers excited. The junior scored 15 factors and performed with the arrogance Izzo has been attempting to instill in him over these final a number of weeks. Akins had MSU’s most shot makes an attempt with 14, changing six into baskets.

Lastly, whereas it wasn’t a banner day for Malik Corridor, the fifth-year senior did attain double-figures with 10 factors on 4-of-8 capturing. Mississippi State’s dimension within the frontcourt made this a harder matchup for Corridor, however he did sufficient to make an influence. Hoggard had eight factors for the Spartans, whereas Holloman and Booker every added 5.

4.) Uncharacteristic turnovers

About the one factor Michigan State did not do nicely on the offensive finish was deal with the basketball. Mississippi State is a tricky, defensive squad, however most of the Spartans’ turnovers as we speak have been simply careless. Michigan State got here into the sport averaging simply 10 giveaways per sport, third-best within the Massive Ten, however the Spartans coughed it up a whopping 16 occasions in opposition to the Bulldogs. What’s worse is that it was two of MSU’s most skilled gamers who have been the most important culprits — seniors Hoggard and Corridor every had 5 turnovers. Holloman additionally had a pair of giveaways when he misfired on a pair lob makes an attempt to Coen Carr.

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MSU was capable of overcome the miscues with how nicely they shot the ball as we speak, however they’re going to want to scrub these up as they advance to the subsequent spherical. Luckily, for many of the 12 months, this has been considered one of Izzo’s greatest groups at caring for the ball, so as we speak’s turnovers could also be extra of a blip on the radar than any trigger for concern.

5.) Protection and Rebounding

In all probability the most important matchup concern for Michigan State coming into this sport was Mississippi State’s propensity for offensive rebounds. The Spartans have struggled to safe the defensive glass via a lot of this season, however they have been stable in that division as we speak.

For the sport, Michigan State received the rebounding battle 35-29, and whereas the Spartans did surrender 13 offensive rebounds, nearly all of these got here late within the sport with MSU main by double-digits. For the second consecutive sport, Sissoko had a robust day on the glass with 9 rebounds. Akins grabbed seven rebounds, whereas Corridor added 5.

That effort on the glass was a part of a superb defensive effort for Michigan State, which held Mississippi State to 37% capturing from the ground and 6-of-27 (22.2%) from the 3-point line. This was a classic effort from the Tom Izzo-coached Spartans, and it has MSU headed to the second spherical.

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