The 2019 Big Ten Tournament had two interesting semi-final games on Saturday afternoon. Michigan State faced off against Wisconsin and Michigan matched up against a pretty hot Minnesota team.
Let’s take a look at what happened.
Game of the Day:
-No. 1 Michigan State Spartans, 67, No. 4 Wisconsin Badgers 55
The premier matchup for the Big Ten on Saturday was between Michigan State and Wisconsin. And though the game didn’t look like it would deliver early on, Wisconsin was able to keep things relatively close in the second half. However, it wasn’t enough, as Michigan State was able to grab a 67-55 win over the Badgers to advance.
For Michigan State, this was a really nice win to add to the team’s resume heading into Selection Sunday. The Badgers are a nationally relevant team and beating them on a neutral court won’t be overlooked. The win will put the Spartans in the championship game on Sunday where the team will face off against arch-rival Michigan in the afternoon.
On the other side, Wisconsin couldn’t get the job done and will now have to await its fate on Selection Sunday. A poor start to the game really buried the Badgers in this one and Ethan Happ was just ok. Fans will hope he can do better in next week’s NCAA Tournament.
-No. 3 Michigan Wolverines 76, No. 7 Minnesota Golden Gophers 49
For the second time in two days, Michigan faced off against what looked like a tricky opponent and cruised to an easy win. The Wolverines blew out Iowa on Friday night and replicated that on Saturday with an even bigger blowout against Minnesota. All told, Michigan ended up being able to unload its bench in route to a 76-49 win.
For Michigan, it’s hard to complain much about this one. The Wolverines absolutely dominated this game. After the opening minutes, Michigan took control and never looked back. Zavier Simpson played well, Isaiah Livers scored 21 points, and Jordan Poole had an efficient afternoon as well. The Wolverines will now prepare for a rematch against Michigan State on Sunday afternoon.
On the other side, Minnesota suffered a tough loss and will now have to await its fate later tonight on the Selection Show on CBS. The Gophers are going to be in the Big Dance, but nobody can be sure about the team’s seeding. It should be interesting to follow.