After Great Start, Miami Collapses Against Michigan State

Mar 19, 2017, 00:30

The 6-foot-1 guard went for 26 points, 11 assists and five boards, knocking down 6 of 9 3-pointers - five in the second half. But do they have a benchmark now to say, hey we did this, we did that? Miami's rebounding and defense which had been their strengths all season failed them on Friday night. "And yet we kept playing defense and quit turning it over". Tom Izzo's Spartan teams are about as successful as any program in March since 2000. ". We just couldn't stop them". ". What a cool thing to watch happen, and I'd like to keep it going a little while".

Alvin Ellis III gave the Spartans their first lead with four minutes until halftime, and they made nine of their last 11 shots in the first half to take a 38-27 lead into the break.

Michigan State is always risky in March with Tom Izzo and the team has the raw talent to make something happen, but the Spartans have been too inconsistent this season, especially away from East Lansing. Rhode Island's length inside and the play of Hasaan Martin are going to be key factors in whether or not they can continue this run with a win against or on Sunday.

Miami (21-12) exited in the first round for the first time in three trips to the NCAA Tournament under coach Jim Larranaga.

"They won't see another team as hot as that one", I said to my friends after watching Oklahoma State lose to Iowa State in Ames back on February 28.

In his final game, Dayton's Scoochie Smith had a game-high 25 points to go along with four assists, three rebounds and two steals.

Miami (21-12) accounted for the game's first 10 points and before the Spartans could respond, the advantage stretched to 17-5 on a dunk from Bruce Brown.

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"Like I said, the offense has always been there throughout the course of the year". But we've played a lot of big teams all year. Despite the No. 10 seed Cowboys battling with MI in the second half, they didn't have LeBron James on their side to stop the Wolverines' onslaught.

At Indianapolis, Mangok Mathiang scored 18 points and Deng Adel added 16 to highlight second-seeded Louisville's 78-63 dismantling of Jacksonville State at Indianapolis. Playing against top-ranked opponents at venues across the country built the Spartans up, while the Hurricanes tore themselves down. That's nothing different than we're used to in the Big Ten.

Up next for MSU is No. 1 Kansas.

Louisville faces seventh-seeded MI on Sunday for a ticket to the Sweet 16. They weren't, and Michigan's the team moving on.

Izzo said, shaking his head. MI hit 16 3-pointers to set a school record for an NCAA Tournament game, but the Wolverines trailed 64-62 before going on a 14-4 run. But Walton and forward D.J. Wilson would close out the game from the free throw line going 4-for-4 to ice the win for the Wolverines.

"I don't know if they thought they (had us beat)", Winston said.

In the meantime, MSU will bask in the win.