A short-handed Michigan State team narrowly edged Oakland University, 67-63, Saturday night at the Palace of Auburn Hills.
The Spartans were without Gary Harris due to an ankle injury, Matt Costello because of mononucleosis and Kenny Kaminski who is suspended indefinitely, due to academic issues.
This was MSU’s first game since losing to North Carolina, and the Spartans picked up where they left off against the Tar Heels – playing ugly basketball for almost the entire game. Brandon Dawson committed five of the team’s 17 turnovers.
Appling led Michigan State with 21 points. Despite turnovers, Dawson bounced back nicely after a bad game against UNC, scoring 16 points and collecting 13 rebounds.
The Spartans trailed by as many as eight points in the first half despite Adreian Payne scoring 16 of his 20 points in the first half. Payne also grabbed 10 rebounds.
Tom Izzo got quality minutes out of true freshman Alvin Ellis III, who played 19 minutes and scored four points while playing very well on the defensive end.
Only five Michigan State players scored in the game.
MSU’s next game is Tuesday, Dec. 17 at the Breslin Center against the University of North Florida.
-MSU came into the game against Oakland with the highest assists per game average in the nation, with about 21 assists per game. The team recorded only 14 on Saturday, while committing 17 turnovers.
Andrew Hayes is the host of Impact Izzone for Impact Sports.
Photo: David Defever