Nov. 25, 2012
EAST LANSING, Mich. - The Michigan State women's basketball team knocked off Robert Morris 68-35 on Sunday at Breslin Center, to begin the season 5-0 for the fifth time in program history. Senior Jasmine Thomas continued her excellent final season, leading the Spartans with 14 points, eight assists and five steals.
Michigan State opened with the game's first seven points, and 15 of the first 17, and never trailed. The Spartans held the Colonials to 13.6% (3-for-22) from the field in the first half, en route to a 30-12 edge at the break.
Robert Morris scored the first basket in the second half, but MSU followed with 13 unanswered points to open up a 43-14 lead with 14 minutes left. The Spartans lead grew to as much as 35 late in the game, before closing with a 68-35 victory.
Thomas was 6-for-7 from the field en route to her 14 points, while committing only two turnovers to her season-high eight assists. Junior Annalise Pickrel added 11 points, knocking down 3-of-6 from behind the arc, while senior Courtney Schiffauer had a season-high 10 points and a game-high nine rebounds.
The Spartan defense forced 21 turnovers, and held the Colonials to 25.5% shooting from the field and 15.4% (2-for-13) from behind the arc. MSU also had a 46-to-26 edge on the glass.
The Spartans hit the road on Thursday to face NC State in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge at 7 p.m.
POST GAME NOTES:
- Jasmine Thomas has scored in double figures in all five games this season and led the team in scoring for the first time this season and the seventh time in her career.
- Thomas' five steals tied her career high and her eight assists were the second-most in a single game in her career.
- Over her last four games, Thomas has a 4.5 assist-to-turnover ratio (27 assists, six turnovers).
- Annalise Pickrel has yet to commit a turnover this season in 162 minutes of action.
- Pickrel has 14 3-pointers this season, already surpassing her previous single season high of 13 last season.
- Michigan State is now 17-1 at home in November under Coach Merchant.
- The Spartans have allowed opponents only 187 points (37.4 per game) through the first five contests. The total is the third fewest to begin the season, and the fewest since the first two seasons on Spartan basketball.
- The Spartans held Robert Morris' leading scorer Artemis Spanou (18.5 ppg) to eight points on 2-for-11 shooting.
- MSU is 93-8 under Merchant when holding a team to 60 points or less.
- The Spartans went to the line seven more times that RMU, and are now 48-5 over the last four seasons when shooting more free throws than their opponent.
- Branndais Agee made her first appearance of the season, after missing the first four games due to injury.
- Tracy Nogle scored seven points in eight minutes off the bench, going 3-for-3 from the field, including a 3-pointer. Nogle had 10 career points in her previous 17 appearances.
- Nogle also grabbed three rebounds, having totaled four in her 17 game career.
- Mariah Harris scored her first collegiate points today with four. She also added a season-high five rebounds (four on the offensive end) in a season-high 15 minutes.
- Today was the first meeting between MSU and Robert Morris.