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1/17 Big Ten Recap: Michigan State Holds Off Nebraska

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The Spartans remain undefeated in conference play.

NCAA Basketball: Michigan State at Nebraska Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

In Thursday’s only game, the sixth ranked Spartans traveled to Lincoln to face off against a Nebraska team coming off of a big road win against Indiana.

Let’s see how both teams fared in tonight’s outing.

Game of the Night

#6 Michigan State Spartans 70, Nebraska Cornhuskers 64

Nebraska has always been a difficult team to beat at home and if the Cornhuskers could become a more consistent team on the road they would be in a much better position in the Big Ten right now. While the Cornhuskers are hard to beat at home, Michigan State isn’t exactly a slouch either, currently sitting just outside of the top five.

With that being said, it wasn’t a huge surprise to see the game tied late in the first half. Michigan State was able to close the half on a 7-0 run and keep Nebraska from making a field goal the last 4:52, building a slim 33-28 lead at the break.

Nebraska would fight back and retake the lead early in the second half, hanging with Michigan State until around the final five minutes of the game. After James Palmer Jr. hit a jumper to cut the deficit to three with 5:32 to go, Michigan State would go on a 9-0 run to push the lead to 12 with 1:50 remaining. Nebraska would cut the lead down to four with 24 seconds to go, but Michigan State made their free throws down the stretch to close out the game and hold on for a 70-64 victory.

Cassius Winston had a big night for the Spartans, leading Michigan State with 29 points. The only other Spartan to hit double figures was Nick Ward, who added 15 points and 10 rebounds. On the other side of the ball, James Palmer Jr. led the Cornhuskers with 24 points, thought it took him 21 shots and 11 free throws to get there. Nebraska struggled from the field, shooting 32.8% and 5 of 26 from three. They did commit less turnovers than Michigan State, but their poor shooting night was ultimately their undoing.

Tonight’s win was the 19th straight conference win (regular season) for Michigan State, while it was Nebraska’s first home loss since last season.