Indiana’s longest losing streak in eight years has come to an end in impressive fashion.
On Saturday night, Indiana posted a 79-75 overtime win over Michigan State at the Breslin Center, putting an end to their seven-game losing skid. The Hoosiers registered the victory in one of the B1G’s most hostile environment, largely without the assistance of star forward Juwan Morgan.
Five Hoosiers scored in double figures and Justin Smith posted a double-double, recording 13 points and 10 rebounds in the win. Romeo Langford led IU in scoring, finishing the game with 19 points. Al Durham added 14 points while De’Ron Davis and Devonte Green pitched in 12 and 11 off the bench, respectively.
Morgan left the game in the first half with an injury and did not return.
Along with the double-double, Smith made a huge block on Cassius Winston in overtime, preserving the victory for Indiana. With Michigan State trailing by two points, Winston drove to the cup with less than :10 left and a chance to tie. Smith was there to deflect the shot and Davis grabbed the rebound.
Davis was fouled and proceeded to knock down two free throws to secure the win for IU.
Game of inches. What a block by Justin Smith and what a win for IU. pic.twitter.com/W0dIZDE4PW
— Mike Rutherford (@CardChronicle) February 3, 2019
Indiana’s victory is its first since a 73-65 win over Illinois on Jan. 3. The Hoosiers are now 4-7 in conference play and 13-9 overall. As the team’s NCAA tournament resumé was slipping, this was a significant victory for Archie Miller and Co.
Saturday’s defeat marked the second straight loss for Tom Izzo’s bunch. Michigan State lost its first B1G game of the season last Sunday against Purdue, dropping a 73-63 contest to the Boilermakers at Mackey Arena.
Cassius Winston led all scorers with 26 and Xavier Tillman pitched in with 13 off the bench. But the huge difference in the game came at the free throw line. Michigan State converted on just eight of its 22 free throw attempts in the game.
Michigan State is now 18-4 on the year and 9-2 in B1G play.