Riding high off of a 45-42 defeat of the Michigan Wolverines, the Eagles of Eastern Michigan came into East Lansing with an upset mindset. Unfortunately for the Eagles, the men of Sparta were in no mood to be a headline upset. The final score was 66-46 MSU.
The high scorer for the Spartans was Bryn Forbes, who chipped in 14 points off of 4-7 shooting. Travis Trice finished close behind with 13 points on 5 for 12 shooting. Denzel Valentine had a bit of an off night, going 2 for 6 on the night. However, he had 8 assists so the off-shooting performance was nothing to worry about.
The scariest moment of the night was when Branden Dawson went down with a hand injury. Dawson was attempting to deliver home a thunderous put back jam, and was hurt in the process. Coach Izzo had this to say about Dawson’s injury: “Takes the wind out of your sails a little bit.”
Overall, the game was a positive for the Spartans. While Dawson’s injury hurts a team, younger players will be asked to step up and deliver some quality minutes for the team. Javon Bess made his first start of the season, contributing five rebounds in nine minutes.
Coach Izzo also seemed to find some positive signs in his power forward/center players saying that, “Together, they can get this position done.” The two, Matt Costello and Gavin Schilling, contributed 15 points and 12 rebounds. It would seem that Izzo is more comfortable with Schilling starting with Costello coming off the bench to provide a different look at the power forward/center.
The Spartans return to action this Saturday against Texas Southern at 5:00 p.m.
Nick Carver is a multimedia journalist for Impact Sports.
Photo: David Defever