The Michigan State Spartans dropped a close one this afternoon at Breslin Center to the Illinois Fighting Illini, falling by a 79-74 final score and dropping to 18-8 on the season so far; they've also lost four of their last five. Their comeback attempt in the game's second half fell just short after having initially trailed by double digits in the game's opening 20 minutes.
Point guard Tyson Walker scored 26 points on the afternoon, 24 of them in the second half alone. Meanwhile, A.J. Hoggard added 15 points of his own.
Head coach Tom Izzo was fired up after the game, particularly in his thoughts on the officiating.
“I’m sick and tired of the officiating,” he stated in his post game press conference. “I’m sick of it.”
Izzo specifically referenced a play in which Malik Hall was blocked on the baseline and went down hard, but play continued.
Coleman Hawkins utilizes his length and athleticism to recover and get the block on this Malik Hall attempt on the offensive rebound pic.twitter.com/9r3W6dEp0U
— Hoop Informatics 🏀📊🎥 (@HoopInformatics) February 19, 2022
However, the news wasn't all bad from Izzo.
“The best thing I got out of today is we competed in the second half and made enough plays to get it under 10,” he said.
“I think this is one of the rare times in my career that I think we made some progress in a loss,” he continued.
Michigan State continues their schedule with a trip to Iowa to battle the Hawkeyes on Tuesday.
– – Quotes via Chris Solari Link – –