(East Lansing) The MSU Spartans returned to familiar form on Saturday by wearing down the Boilermakers and making the big plays to earn the 69-61 victory.
The Spartans (16-11 overall, 8-6 Big Ten) resembled the same style of play that earned them four consecutive Big Ten titles from 1998 through 2001.
The Spartans outrebounded, made their free throws and played outstanding defense to give Purdue its third loss in four games. With the loss, Purdue drops to 17-9 overall and 9-6 in the Big Ten.
After going more than seven minutes without a point to start the second half, MSU got it rolling by hitting eight consecutive shots. The Boilermakers built a 40-32 lead, before a 13-2 run put MSU in front to stay.
The Spartans leading scorer, sophomore guard Chris Hill, was held scoreless for the first 30 minutes of the game and was a big reason for MSUs offensive charge. Hill knocked down a 3-point shot and sank four free throws in the latter stages of the game. Hill finished with 9 points.
MSU, once again, had a great day from the charity stripe. The Spartans knocked down 26-of-28 from the free-throw line to secure the victory. On Wednesday night MSU sank 31-of-40 against Minnesota
The Boilermakers were led by guard Willie Deane who finished with 17 points.
The Spartans and the Boilermakers both used big runs in the first half to make it a 32-32 tie at half
Purdue used a 9-0 run to take a 13-6 run in the first five minutes of the game. The Boilermakers extended the lead to 26-16, before MSU would make its run.
MSU closed out the first half on a 16-6 run, thanks to a great performance from Torbert and some nice shooting from the free-throw line.
The Boilermakers used defensive pressure to force MSU into turnovers, which led to 10 points in transition. Guard Willie Deane and forward Ivan Kartelo each scored 8 points to lead Purdue.
The Spartans will conclude their three-game homestand with a Wednesday night game against Iowa.