No. 3 Michigan State pulls away for 62-52 win over Rutgers
Wednesday Dec 06, 2017 12:00am
(PISCATAWAY, NJ) - After blowing out its last six opponents, including highly regarded North Carolina and Notre Dame, No. 3 Michigan State was due for one of those off nights. It almost cost them against Rutgers. Miles Bridges scored 21 points and the Spartans (8-1, 2-0 Big Ten) overcame their worst offensive performance of the season with a 62-52 victory over the surprising Scarlet Knights (6-3, 0-2) on Tuesday night. Against Rutgers, the Spartans had 15 turnovers, gave up 20 offensive rebounds and they played like a team that was starting four sophomores and a freshman, Jaren Jackson Jr. who scored all 11 of his points in the second half and had eight of the Spartans' season-high 13 blocks. Joshua Langford added 15 points on 6-of-20 shooting from the field. Rutgers made Michigan State work for this one, holding the Spartans to season lows in points and shooting percentage (38.6). The previous low was 63 points and 40 percent shooting against North Carolina. What Michigan State did well was play defense. It came into the game with the nation's best field goal defense (34.2) and it held the Scarlet Knights to 25.8 percent shooting from the field (17 of 66). Deshawn Freeman had 13 points and Geo Baker and Eugene Omoruyi added 11 apiece for Rutgers, which lost its third straight.
Miles Bridges puts up a shot over a Rutgers defender (photo courtesy of Noah K. Murray/USA Today Sports)