Spartans are Big Ten Tournament Champions

Early in the first half, Travis Trice hit a pull-up jumper and could be seen saying,

“That’s easy.”

That is the way Michigan State made it look as they defeated the University of Michigan 69-55 Sunday afternoon.

The Wolverines got out to a 9-4 lead early in the first, but a Branden Dawson jumper started a 12-0 run for Michigan State, and the Spartans never looked back.

Michigan State led by nine points at halftime after Gary Harris ended the period with a nifty crossover past two Michigan defenders for a dunk.

The Wolverines hung around in the second half, but MSU opened the game up late in the half and led by as much as 18 late in the game.

MSU played lockdown defense and did not allow Michigan to establish themselves in the post. The Wolverines had nine turnovers, seven of which were Michigan State steals.

Adreian Payne led the Spartans with 18 points and nine rebounds. Harris and Dawson also scored in double figures. They scored 15 apiece. Dawson had six boards while guarding Nik Stauskas on the defensive end.

Dawson received the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player award.

Michigan State was awarded a No. 4 seed for the NCAA Tournament. The Spartans will play the No. 13 seed Delaware Blue Hens in their first game of the tourney on Thursday.

Andrew Hayes is the host of Impact Izzone for Impact Sports.

Photo: David Defever/Impact Sports