Indiana couldn’t have wanted a better scenario with the game on the line in the final seconds Saturday at Asssembly Hall.
Yogi Ferrell was at the free throw line with two shots with 2 seconds to play and his team down by two. Ferrell had made 9-of-10 free throws on the day. He came into the game as an 85 percent free throw shooter.
The first one bounced around and fell in. The second one, however, missed to the right.
Martin Clark made one free throw at the other end with seven tenths of a second to play and Nick Zeisloft hoisted a 3-pointer from half court that was short as time expired and Michigan State held on to beat Indiana, 74-72 at Assembly Hall.
It was the third loss in a row for the Hoosiers who finished the regular season with a 9-9 Big Ten mark. Indiana (19-12, 9-9) will play in the Big Ten Tournament on Thursday in Chicago.
Indiana had to stage a furious rally just to get back into this one. Michigan State led by 11 at 67-56 with 3:52 to play.
But IU got back into the game with a couple of big defensive stops and a few key 3-pointers or three-point plays.
James Blackmon Jr. scored on a drive and hit a free throw with 1:47 to play that cut the lead to 67-62.
Later with IU trailing 72-66, Zeisloft hit a 3-pointer from the top to cut the lead to three at 72-69.
On the other end Matt Costello missed two free throws for the Spartans with 24.3 seconds to play and then Blackmon was fouled with 5.3 seconds remaining. He hit both to cut the lead to one.
Ferrell led the Hoosiers with 21 points and Zeisloft and Blackmon had 17 points each.
Trice led Michigan State with 21 points.
The Spartans played Saturday’s game without Branden Dawson who was averaging 11.6 points and 9.3 rebounds per game.