National Basketball Association
Michigan St 77, Rutgers 65
When: 7:00 PM ET, Sunday, December 8, 2019
Where: Breslin Center, East Lansing, Michigan
# Courtney Green, # Kelly Pfeifer, # Terry Oglesby
Cassius Winston scored 23 points to lead No. 11 Michigan State to a 77-65 victory over Rutgers on Sunday in East Lansing, Mich.
Winston also had seven assists as Michigan State (6-3, 1-0 Big Ten) bounced back from the loss to Duke earlier in the week to open Big Ten play with a victory. Sophomore Gabe Brown scored a season-high 14 for the Spartans, while junior Xavier Tillman added 14 points and 10 rebounds and sophomore Aaron Henry chipped in 12 points.
Graduate transfer Akwasi Yeboah scored 17 to lead Rutgers, which remained winless against Michigan State in 10 all-time meetings. Junior guard Jacob Young added 12 points for the Scarlet Knights (6-3, 0-1).
Michigan State had trouble putting the ball in the basket in the first half, going 11-for-31 from the field, including 3-for-11 from 3-point range. The Spartans also turned the ball over six times but still managed to hold a 33-28 lead at halftime thanks to a six-point surge to close out the first half.
Rutgers, meanwhile, shot 43.3 percent (13-for-30) from the field but turned the ball over seven times, which led to 10 Michigan State points.
The shooting picked up in the second half, as Michigan State jumped on Rutgers in the opening minutes, taking a 43-32 lead after back-to-back 3-pointers from Kyle Ahrens and Winston. But the Scarlet Knights clawed right back into the game, going on a 10-0 run to trim the deficit to a single point with 10:55 to play.
A 6-0 run from Michigan State with just less than six minutes to play gave the Spartans a 56-48 lead, but Rutgers converted a three-point play off a turnover to cut the deficit to five. Then a 3-pointer from Brown gave Michigan State a 61-53 lead.
The Spartans eventually stretched the advantage to 66-55 with just more than three minutes to play and never allowed the Scarlet Knights closer than nine.
--Field Level Media
Top Game Performances
Akwasi Yeboah 17
Cassius Winston 23
Geo Baker 5
Cassius Winston 7
Montez Mathis 5
Xavier Tillman 10
Jacob Young 6
||Free Throws Made
Gabe Brown 8
Geo Baker 1
Cassius Winston 3
Ron Harper Jr. 1
Gabe Brown 1
Team Stats Summary