Tuesday was a huge night for Michigan State basketball. The Spartans took down the Iowa Hawkeyes. The win moves Michigan State into second place in a wildly competitive Big Ten. MSU will have a chance to move closer to first when they travel to Maryland on Saturday to take on the Terrapins.
Tillman Breaks the Block
In order to win, the Spartans had to deal with Iowa Hawkeyes star Luka Garza, who is potentially the Big Ten Player of the Year. He’s averaging 23.6 points and 9.6 rebounds on 55% shooting and has led Iowa to their best season in years. MSU’s Xavier Tillman guarded him for most of the game. Late in the second half, Tillman blocked a shot from Garza that gave the junior the Michigan State record for career blocks and essentially sealed the game.
Cash and the Rocket
In the Spartans last two wins, Cassius Winston and Rocket Watts have combined for 74 of the teams 148 points. It has become clear that Rocket Watts needs to be a reliable third scoring option if MSU wants to make a Tournament run. In their recent loss to Maryland, Watts had only five points. When he’s playing well, Winston has more space and therefore more opportunities to make plays.
Taking on the Terrapins
The last time Michigan State played Maryland pain filled the hearts of Spartan fans everywhere. MSU held a seven-point lead with 3:25 remaining and ended up losing by seven thanks to a lot of threes from Anthony Cowan Jr. Thankfully, the Spartans get another chance on Saturday. Maryland is currently in first place in the Big Ten, leading Michigan State by 1.5 games. Needless to say, this game is a must-win if the MSU wants to win the Big Ten. If Winston, Watts, and Tillman can all play at their highest level, the Big Ten title just might inch a little closer.
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