Allen’s double-double sparks MSU blowout

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By Joe Dandron

EAST LANSING, Mich. — Michigan State women’s basketball got a big double-double from the team’s lone senior, Jenna Allen (19 points, 10 rebounds), en route to a big home victory over Texas Southern on Sunday afternoon.

The Spartans defeated Texas Southern 91-45, outscoring the Tigers 82-36 after being tied at 9 early in the first quarter before they began to heat up on offense.

“I give them a lot of credit. I thought came out of the gates with a lot more enthusiasm and energy and more physicality or speed,” said MSU head coach Suzy Merchant following the 36-point win. “We were just sort of going through the motions a little bit it seemed like [early].”

Although the Spartans were sluggish early, they still led 28-16 following a 12-of-17 shooting effort in the opening frame.

MSU was extremely physical throughout the game and only allowed TSU to shoot 32 percent from the field, while also out-rebounding the Tigers 50-31.

The team was led in rebounding by Allen, who was all over the court snagging boards left and right on the way to her third double-digit rebounding effort of the year.

“I’m definitely in better shape this year,” the senior said following the game. “I’m able to get more rebounds and play longer. I’m getting my legs under me in my shot, I feel like that’s the number one thing that’s made me successful this year.”

Despite the big lead at the break, the Spartans put it into overdrive as they expanded on an already-growing lead. MSU drove the lead up to 31 before the end of the third.

The fourth quarter was more of the same as the Spartans continued to dominate Texas Southern for the remainder of the game despite a strong second half of play from TSU guard Niya Mitchell. Mitchell finished with a double-double of 12 points and 11 rebounds.

The Spartans finished out strong as some freshman got a lot of run in the second half with freshmen Kayla Belles and Tory Ozment playing most of their minutes in the second half.

Ozment finished with 16 points, her third straight game scoring 15 or more points off the bench.

The Spartans will take on Oakland this coming Wednesday at 5 p.m.. and that game can be found on BTN Plus. MSU is now 6-1 this season with their only loss coming to a now-No. 13 N.C. State team.