Dec. 22, 1997

Mateen Cleaves
Cleaves scored 15, all in the second half, against South Florida.

Spartans Victorious Over South Florida, 68-53

TAMPA Fla. -- Mateen Cleaves scored all 15 of his points in the second half as Michigan State pulled away for a 68-53 victory over South Florida on Saturday.

Charlie Bell and DuJuan Wiley scored 12 each for Michigan State (6-3). The Spartans pulled away with a 12-2 run midway through the second half that made it 52-38.

Cleaves sparked the run with six points and an alley-oop assist to Wiley.

Cedric Smith led South Florida (7-3) with 12 points, while Artha Reeves had a game-high 12 rebounds for the Bulls.

Poor shooting from the field and at the free-throw line hurt South Florida down the stretch. South Florida hit just 10 of 19 from the free-throw line in the second half and shot 24.6 percent from the field for the game.

Michigan State took advantage of the Bulls' dismal shooting to run out to a 13-2 lead to open the game. South Florida didn't register its first field goal until the 10:37 mark, when Smith's three-pointer made it 15-7.

Haven Jackson's three-pointer pulled the Bulls to within 19-14 at the 7:48 mark of the half. A layup by Andre Hutson and a three-pointer by Bell quickly put the Spartans up by 10, before the Bulls cut it to 32-26 at halftime.

Three-pointers by Smith and Scott Johnson tied the game at 32 early in the second half, and the Bulls later used a 7-0 run to pull to within 52-45.