No. 25 Spartans Travel to Blacksburg to Continue Big Ten/ACC Challenge

Michigan State continues the Big Ten/ACC Challenge with a trip to Blacksburg, Va., for the first time in program history, to play the 6-2 Hokies. This will be the fourth meeting between the two programs.

It also marks the second consecutive ACC opponent the Spartans will take on away from the Breslin Center.

Coming out on top only once against the Hokies, the Spartans hope to tie the all-time series at 2-2.

MSU stole the last matchup at the Breslin Center, 57-29, maintaining the lead after the second half and growing it to as much as 30 points. Michigan State forced 21 turnovers and allowed 29 points, making it the fewest points that the Hokies would score in program history.

Both teams are coming off a close loss. The Spartans fell to Florida State, 60-58, on Wednesday and the Hokies fell to Indiana, 71-65, on Wednesday as well.

Since head coach Suzy Merchant took over seven years ago, the Spartans win 75.8 percent of the time following a loss. The Spartans started off their season strong with four players talling double-doubles, the first time since the 2006-07 season.

Senior co-captain Annalise Pickrel leads the Spartans in scoring with 15 points per game and 7.1 rebounds per game, ranking among the top-12 in the Big Ten Conference.

Hokie senior Uju Ugoka became the fifth in Virginia Tech history to score 30-plus points and 10-plus boards in a single game on Wednesday against Indiana. She posted 32 points and 11 rebounds recording her seventh career double-double.

Both team’s next matchups are on December 15 at home, where the Spartans take on Oakland University at the Breslin Center and the Hokies host the University of South Carolina Upstate.


Bri Harvey is a multimedia journalist for Impact Sports.

Photo: Michigan State Women’s Basketball