MSU Dominates Robert Morris, 100-58, In Season Opener
Five Spartans score in double figures led by 17 from freshman Sidney Cooks.
EAST LANSING, Mich. - Five Spartans scored in double figures as the Michigan State women’s basketball team captured the season opener against Robert Morris, 100-58, Saturday.
Freshman forward Sidney Cooks was impressive in her Spartans’ debut, scoring 17 points to go with six rebounds and three assists. Also playing her first game in the Green and White was redshirt-sophomore Shay Colley, who tallied 16 points, four boards and two steals.
Three other Spartans reached double figures in senior forward Taya Reimer (10), sophomore guard Taryn McCutcheon (11) and redshirt-senior guard Branndais Agee (13). MSU also had 24 steals on 38 made field goals. Senior guard Lexi Gussert tied her career high with five helpers.
“All of our bigs can shoot which isn’t a bad thing. I don’t mind having that option. We have guards that can post, so we can mess around. It’s fun. I enjoy the versatility piece, which we also look for in kids. It has been awhile since I have had a pick and pop player four man in Sidney (Cooks) who can knock it down,” MSU head coach Suzy Merchant said.
The Spartans improved to 2-0 in the series against the Colonials. All-time, MSU is 31-15 in season openers, but 23-2 when the opener is in East Lansing. Coach Merchant is 8-3 in season openers at MSU, and has won 14 of her last 17 as a head coach, including her time at Eastern Michigan.
Michigan State came out hot to start the game. All five starters scored as the Spartans opened the season with a 10-0 run. Toward the end of the first quarter, the Colonials used an 8-0 run to cut the Michigan State lead to 17-11.
However, the Spartans pulled away in the second quarter and by halftime, MSU had a commanding 54-22 lead with Cooks earning 12 first-half points.
The Colonials did not go down with out a fight, starting the third quarter with a 14-4 run to cut the gap to 58-36 with under six left in the frame. In the fourth quarter, five-straight points from McCutcheon gave MSU the 32-point advantage, 83-49, with 9:31 left in the game. An Agee layup with 24 seconds remaining put the Spartans over the century mark.
Michigan State returns to action on Monday, Nov. 13, taking on in-state foe Oakland at 7 p.m. The game will be streamed on BTN Plus.
MSU Notes vs. Robert Morris
• Michigan State had 12 players see action in Saturday’s game, with 11 scoring.
• Five Spartans scored in double digits, with freshman forward Sidney Cooks leading the way with 17 and redshirt-sophomore guard Shay Colley adding 16.
• The last time MSU scored 100 points or more was on Feb. 27, 2016 when it scored 107 points against Ohio State. The school record for most points in a game was set on Nov. 14, 2008 when the Spartans scored 116 points against Niagara.
• MSU held Robert Morris to just eight second period points. The eight points is the third lowest points allowed in a quarter in school history.
• Saturday marked the first career start for both Cooks and Colley.
• Sophomore guard Taryn McCutcheon has started every game of her career with Saturday marking the 34th start of her career.
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