Spartans lose triple OT thriller 109-106

With Gonzaga leading 107-106 in the third OT, Goran Suton missed a lay up that would have given MSU a lead with time expiring. Gonzaga grabbed the rebound and two Bulldog free throws sealed the Spartans fate.

LAHAINA, HAWAII—It was a duel between Adam Morrison and Maurice Ager last night in the Spartans' (1-2) loss to Gonzaga (3-0) in triple overtime. In one of the most entertaining games ever seen in the regular season of college basketball history Michigan State fell short by a score of 109-106. Adam Morrison scored 43 points for No. 9 Gonzaga and hit big shot after big shot while Maurice Ager put up 36 points and had 7 three-point field goals for the No. 12 Spartans and an answer for almost every blow that Morrison delivered. Ager was in foul trouble for most of the game in regulation and eventually fouled out at the end of the third overtime period. There were 13 lead changes in the final 7:30 of regulation that ended with a Maurice Ager three-pointer to tie the game at 80-80. In the end of the first overtime Gonzaga had a chance to win the game but couldn't get one of the three shots to fall in the last nine seconds of the period. The second overtime ended after a traveling call on Shannon Brown that left 0.9 seconds on the clock but once again Gonzaga couldn't take advantage.

Finally, in the third overtime Gonzaga took the lead 107-106 after two free throws by Adam Morrison. Michigan State had a chance to take the lead but Goran Suton missed a lay-up after a nice dish from Drew Neitzel and Gonzaga gained possession of the ball for the victory.

After the game, both coaches said it was one of the greater games they had ever been involved in. Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo felt bad that they had to come out on the losing end after playing so well.

Izzo was proud of the way his team played even with a hurt Shannon Brown and he said they probably wouldn't even have made it through a fourth overtime period. Senior center Paul Davis also had one of his best games in his career. Davis had 26 points and 13 rebounds.

It was one of the best offensive performances in college basketball history put on by both teams, but in the end Adam Morrison came out on top as the top performer with a spectacular showing of spot-up shooting and penetration and was virtually unstoppable last night.

Derek Raivio had 26 points and Shannon Brown added 19 points for the Spartans. Raivio was clutch down the stretch for Gonzaga at the free-throw line.

Both teams were nearly flawless from the free-throw line. Gonzaga was 27-28 from the line and the Spartans were 26-29 from the line.

Davis and Raivio played 53 minutes a piece and Morrison played 52 minutes. You better believe those guys were exhausted last night and might be a little sore today when the step on the court. Gonzaga will move on to the championship game of the Maui Invitational tonight against Connecticut. Michigan State will play against Arizona at 3:30 pm.

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