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Forbes, Spartans pull away from Buckeyes on the road, 81-62

Coming into Tuesday’s tilt with the Ohio State Buckeyes, the Michigan State Spartans have won six of their last seven games after dropping three straight and seemingly raising the eyebrows of many around the country.

At least on paper, the level of competition has dropped off a bit for MSU’s final four games of the regular season, starting with the first of two matchups in eleven days with the Buckeyes.

MSU made it rain from outside again tonight. Behind 14 3s, the Spartans pulled away late from a pesky Buckeyes squad, 81-62.

Michigan State (23-5, 10-5 Big Ten) didn’t have its prettiest performance of the season, but they made more plays than Ohio State and did not endure any serious scoring droughts like the Buckeyes did. Bryn Forbes posted his 7th 20-point performance with a game-high 27 points, responsible for half of the team’s made field goals from downtown.

Coach Tom Izzo was coach particularly ‘tough love’ hard on Forbes and the other MSU seniors. Denzel Valentine had a 17 point, 8 assist, 5 rebound stat line. Matt Costello chipped in with 16.

The Buckeyes (18-11, 10-6 Big Ten) received some extremely disappointing news prior to the game. The team’s leading scorer Jae’Sean Tate will be sidelined for the remainder of the season with a shoulder injury and is expected to undergo at least a six-month rehab. For a team desperate for statement victories to help their chances of making the tournament, this is a big blow for the Buckeyes.

The 19-point defeat was not really indicative of how close the game was for a large portion of the game. Junior Marc Loving led his team in scoring with 19 points, including a perfect 10-10 from the charity stripe. JaQuan Lyle was the only other Buckeye in double-figures with 16 points.

Michigan State will return home for their final game of February, welcoming in Penn State for a noon tip-off on Sunday, February 28th.

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