For the second straight game, all five of Michigan State’s starters scored in double-figures as the Spartans clobbered Cleveland State 111 to 61. This was the highest scoring output for MSU since scoring 118 against Alcorn State in 2008. The Spartans also surpassed the century mark in three straight games for the first time since the 2004-’05 season when they did against Florida A&M (104), Green Bay (104), and Nicholls State (102).
In total, Michigan State finished with six players in double figures. Josh Langford led the way with 23 points on 9 of 12 shooting from the field and 4 of 5 shooting from behind the arc. Nick Ward fell one point short of that mark as he finished with 22 on 7 of 8 shooting from the field. Ward also grabbed a team high 14 rebounds to record his third double-double of the season.
Miles Bridges added in 18 points, Jaren Jackson Jr. scored 12, while Cassius Winston and Matt McQuaid each scored 11.
The Vikings were led by Bobby Word who scored a game high 26 points while converting on 7 of 13 three-pointers. Anthony Wright also added 14.
With the win the Spartans improved to 13-1 and extend their win streak to 12 games. With the loss, Cleveland State fell to 3-10 and have lost four straight games.
At was all Spartans from the tip as they went into the half with a 63-25 lead. Michigan State was able to top 60 points in a half for the first time since the 2008-’09 season when they accomplished that mark against Alcorn State. The 63 first-half points the Spartans scored were also the most in a half during the Izzo era.
Michigan State shot an astounding 74 percent from the field (23 of 31) through the first 20 minutes. Three Spartans went into the break with double-digit scoring totals, led by Langford’s 17 points on 7 of 8 shooting from the field. Jackson Jr. added 12 and Ward added 11 on 4 of 4 shooting through the first 20 minutes.
Michigan State connected on their first seven shots and did not record their first miss until there was 15:09 remaining in the half when Bridges miss a jump shot.
The Spartans used a plethora of large scoring runs to get into the break with their 38 point lead. Michigan State opened the contest on a 7-0 run (Winston, lay-up, Winston three-pointer, Ward lay-up) to force a Cleveland State timeout just 1:11 in. With a 15 point lead, the Spartans went on a 14-0 run from 14:36 to the 8:59 mark to extend their lead out to 32-6. Up 22 late in the first half, MSU went on a 17-2 run from 5:56 until there was 1:47 remaining.
The Spartans took their first double-digit lead less than three minutes in. Compared to CSU, the Vikings did not hit double-digit scoring as a team until there was 7:45 remaining in the half.
Their first 20 point lead came midway through that 14-0 run a pair of Ward free-throws with 11:35 remaining. Michigan State’s lead got to 30 with 2:37 remaining and got as high as the 38 point margin at the break.
In contrast, the Vikings shot an abysmal 31 percent (8 of 26) from the field but did have one double-digit scorer in Word who led the team with 11 at the break.
The runs continued in the second half when Michigan State came out of the break and went on a 10-1 run to extend their lead to 47 at 73-26. Three minutes later, Bridges started a 12-0 run with a lay-up to extend MSU’s lead to 85-30 and grow the lead over 50 for the first time. MSU’s lead reached its peak at 57 with just under 10 minutes remaining.
Michigan State finished with a 65 percent shooting percentage (41 of 63) from the field. This marks the highest percentage the Spartans have recorded, surpassing the 64 percent MSU shot against Houston Baptist just two games ago. The 48 rebounds the Spartans grabbed matches their season high from when they recorded the same amount against Southern Utah on Dec 9.
Cleveland State finished the game shooting 33 percent (19 of 58) from the field. One aspect that they did excel in was three-point shooting. The Vikings connected on 11 of their 37 attempts from behind the arc which ties for the second highest amount made against MSU this season.
With one more game remaining before conference play, Michigan State will host Savannah State at noon on New Years Eve.