Michigan State’s offense continues to shine in win over Western Michigan


Sarah Smith

The Michigan State bench and DeeDee Hagemann celebrates after a Hagemann three-pointer during the Spartans’ 97-49 victory over Western Michigan on November 13, 2022. Photo Credit: Sarah Smith/WDBM

Allie Cohen, Women's Basketball Beat Reporter

EAST LANSING – Michigan State faced Western Michigan on Sunday afternoon and came out victorious 97-49 to stay undefeated. 

The Spartans had an abundance of scorers but were led by sophomores Matilda Ekh and DeeDee Hagemann. The two veteran players had themselves a day, combining for 11 3-pointers, five assists, and five rebounds. Ekh led with 20 points and Hagemann was right behind her with 19. 

Head coach Suzy Merchant was very pleased with Hagemann’s performance.

“Both her [Hagemann] and Tilly hit shots, which helps us set out defense,” Merchant said. “Early on, in our first few games everyone was struggling to put the ball in the basket, so it was really nice to see her do that, and doing it in short minutes is really great to see.” 

MSU had a slow first quarter that was littered with fouls and turnovers. MSU committed five fouls less than five minutes into the game. Western Michigan took advantage early and got out to a 10-9 lead. All 10 of the Broncos’ points at this point had come from WMU’s Lauren Ross, the Broncos’ leading scorer of the day with 17 points. The Spartans quickly regained the lead as Hagemann and Ekh started hitting their threes, but the team still looked sloppy as they finished the first quarter leading 24-13. 

The second quarter was better from MSU, and Merchant started taking advantage of her full bench, giving Abbey Kimball her first minutes as a Spartan after coming back from an illness. 

The second quarter was run by Ekh, as she shot 100% from the field and hit three 3-pointers. Moira Joiner also stood out with six points, three steals, and a block. Turnovers were still an issue for the Spartans in the second quarter. The Spartans ended the first half with 12. 

Despite the turnovers, MSU cleaned up their other issues and led the Broncos 46-19 at the half. 

MSU continued to grow its lead throughout the second half. Merchant got to try many rotations and show off her bench as the game went on. 

Head Coach Suzy Merchant assesses her team ahead of Michigan State’s game against Western Michigan on November 13, 2022. Photo Credit: Sarah Smith/WDBM (Sarah Smith)

Every single player clocked minutes and along with Ekh and Hagemann, Kamaria McDaniel, Gabby Elliott, and Joiner all reached double digits. Although turnovers are still a consistent issue for the Spartans, they were more disciplined in the second half and only had four. 

Isaline Alexander also looked good for the Spartans, with nine points, eight rebounds, and two blocks. 

“Isa was our best defensive rebounder for sure,” Merchant said. “She easily should have been in double figures also, if she made one of her missed free throws. She does a great job and she’s one of the most mobile, she knows how to spread a team out.”

The Spartans face Oakland University at home next Tuesday at 7 p.m.