Spartans jump all over Panther 85-58

Maurice Ager and Paul Davis combined for 36 points and 25 rebounds to propel #12 Michigan State to an easy 85-58 win over the Golden Panthers of Florida International. The big story was Ager's huge 14 rebound day.

EAST LANSING - Maurice Ager's 18 point, 14 rebound performance propelled #12 Michigan State to an easy 85-58 win over visiting Florida International.

Paul Davis chipped in with 18 points and eleven rebounds and Shannon Brown led all scorers with 20 points, four rebounds and four assists.

But it was the play of Ager that wowed fellow backcourt mate Shannon Brown. Ager, who is not known for his rebounding, dominated the boards from his off guard position, collecting a career-high 14 caroms to lead the Spartans dominating effort on the glass.

Former Spartans great Ervin "Magic" Johnson gave the MSU guards a pep talk during Friday's win over Cleveland State about the importance of getting to the window and Ager took the speech to heart.

"That's part of getting our brand back," Ager said about his effort on the glass. "I saw Charlie Bell and Jason Richardson get rebounds here, and I want to be in that same club."

The Spartans flew out of the gate in building a 23-point lead early in the first half. Goran Suton a new addition to the starting lineup, hit two buckets and had a steal to help the Green-and-White's build early momentum.

But Ager's huge slam dunk over the Panthers nearly brought the Breslin Center crashing down. "That dunk he had on the lob was just crazy," admired fellow guard Shannon Brown.

While the game was basically a laugher, MSU taskmaster Izzo found some things he could still use to motivate his reserves to play better.

"I did have to pull some guys [out of the game] tonight, but I always say if we are up 60 or down 60 and they make effort related mistakes, they're coming out," threatened the coach.

"There are still a few areas that we need to work on and I think we will continue get better. We have a couple tough games coming up and if we fix those mistakes I think that will get us to where we need to be."

Izzo also announced the Drew Naymick would petition the NCAA for a medical redshirt and would not play again this season.

The team expects that Goran Suton, Marquise Gray and Idong Ibok will pick up the slack in the absence of Naymick, who will have a season of eligibility remaining next season.


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