March 10, 2013
HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. - Michigan State women's basketball's Big Ten Tournament run came to an end on Sunday, losing to Purdue 64-47 in the championship game at the Sears Centre Arena in Hoffman Estates, Ill. Senior Jasmine Thomas, who led MSU with 14.7 points per game in the tournament, was named to the all-tournament team.
Thomas had team-highs with 15 points and seven rebounds today, also adding two assists and two steals. Sophomore Kiana Johnson chipped in 11 points, while leading MSU with four assists (no turnovers) and four steals.
The Spartans, who entered the tournament as the No. 4 seed, knocked off No. 5 Michigan, 62-46 on Friday and No. 1 Penn State, 54-46 last night, before falling today to the third-seeded Boilermakers.
The game was tight early with Purdue leading 12-8 with 15:50 until halftime. However, the Boilermakers would score the next 13 points which would extend to a 21-2 run over a 14-minute span, opening their largest lead of the day at 33-10. MSU held Purdue scoreless for the final 4:49 of the first half, but managed to only close within 19 at 33-14 going into the break.
Michigan State fought hard in the second half to get back into the game, using a 21-9 run midway through the half to get back within single-digits, 46-37 with 5:53 to go. However, Purdue's Courtney Moses answered with 3-pointers on its next two possessions to grow the lead back to 15 and take the momentum back.
The Spartans will now await their NCAA Tournament fate, with ESPN broadcasting the selection show on Monday, March 18 at 7 p.m.
- Jasmine Thomas was the first Spartan to be named to the all-tournament team since Allyssa DeHaan in 2007. She is the sixth Spartan to earn that honor.
- Today was Michigan State's second Big Ten championship game appearance.
- Thomas has scored in double-figures in eight straight games, tying the longest streak in her career. She has led MSU in scoring in five of those games.
- With four 3-pointers today, MSU now has 167 3-pointers this season, the fourth most in a MSU single-season.
- In her five career Big Ten Tournament games, Kiana Johnson has 21 assists and only three turnovers.