Thursday, March 10, 2011
Rapid Reaction: Michigan State 66, Iowa 61
By Pat Forde
INDIANAPOLIS -- With its NCAA tournament bid hanging in the balance, Michigan State rallied from a seven-point deficit midway through the second half and then held on in the final minutes to beat Iowa 66-61.The Spartans overcame a second-half right leg injury that limited guard Kalin Lucas and made just enough plays to eke out a victory over the 11-20 Hawkeyes.
Turning point: Down 52-45, State got some key stops and scored on five straight possessions to take a 55-54 lead. The Spartans never again relinquished the lead, although it got down to a single point in the final 90 seconds.
Key player:Durrell Summers. The senior guard has had a horrible season, but he scored the Spartans' final seven points to pull them through.
Key stat: Facing at-large bid elimination, Michigan State reverted to an old staple to pull this one out. It hit the glass. Michigan State outrebounded the Hawkeyes by eight, led by Draymond Green's 14 total rebounds and six on the offensive glass.
Miscellaneous: All-Big Ten freshman Melsahn Basabe was benched by Iowa coach Fran McCaffery for the final minutes after some poor possessions in which he turned over the ball on a somewhat selfish offensive move and failed to hustle back defensively.
What’s next: Michigan State will face Purdue on Friday in a game that would seemingly cinch a bid. Iowa's season is over.