#11 Spartans down Purdue, 68-57

The Spartans continue their winning ways with a road win over the Boilermakers Saturday at Mackey Arena.

On Gene Keady day in West Lafayette the undermanned and injured Boilermakers fought hard; but in the end, Michigan State's athleticism and depth proved to be the difference in a 68-57 Spartan win.

Alan Anderson and Maurice Ager each scored 12 points, while Chris Hill and Drew Neitzel chipped in with 11 and 10 points respectively for the 11th ranked Spartans (19-4, 10-2 Big Ten), who have won five straight and nine of 10 with the only loss in that stretch coming to top-ranked Illinois.

Michigan State limited Purdue to 21-of-57 (.368) shooting for the game and only 7-of-26 (.269) shooting in the first half, while the Spartan bench dominated the Purdue reserves on the scorecard with a 22-4 edge.

It was a tough afternoon all around for the Boilermakers (7-16, 3-9 Big Ten), who entered the game with their best player, Carl Landry, hobbled by an injured knee suffered in practice on Friday. Landry had entered the game as the Big Ten's leading scorer (19.5 ppg). Limited by his knee, he played only 21 minutes and finished with a season-low 7 points.

"I could run, but I had trouble making strong moves, and I couldn't really box out aggressively hard because it hurt too much," Landry said.

David Teague did his best to pick up the slack, scoring 11 of Purdue's 18 first-half points. However he was limited to just 4 second-half points to finish with a team-high 15. Teague played 37 minutes, after logging 40 Wednesday night in Purdue's 66-63 win over Iowa.

The Spartans are 5-1 in Big Ten road games where they have limited opponents to less than 37 percent shooting and an average of fewer than 60 points. Without a healthy Landry, the Spartans also controlled the glass, with a 37-27 advantage.

Despite their shooting woes, the Boilermakers and their coach, fought the whole way. It was a physical contest throughout, and plenty of contact was overlooked by the officials on both sides.

After Michigan State built a 28-18 halftime lead, the Boilermakers fought to cut it to five points, at 35-30 with 15:49 in the second half. It was at that point that a non-call caused Mt. Keady to erupt, earning a technical foul when he threw his jacket to the floor in protest.

Michigan State responded at that point with a 12-0 run. Shannon Brown scored four straight points during the stretch. Two points came on free throws after Keady's technical, and the other two came on a jumper on the Spartans' next possession. Purdue never got closer than 10 points the rest of the way.

Next up for the Spartans is a Thursday night showdown (Feb. 24) at the Breslin Center with the 20th ranked Wisconsin Badgers. The game will be televised nationally on ESPN and is scheduled to tip off at 7 p.m. ET.


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