Dec. 30, 2011
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - The Michigan State women's basketball team opened the defense of its 2011 Big Ten title with a 63-49 victory at Indiana on Friday night. It was the Spartans ninth-straight win at Assembly Hall.
Four Spartans reached double-figures led by 12 points from senior Taylor Alton, who went 4-for-7 from behind the arc, tying a career high in makes. Junior Jasmine Thomas and freshman Jasmine Hines each chipped in 11 points, while senior Lykendra Johnson added 10. Freshman Kiana Johnson dished out a season-high nine assists, while junior Courtney Schiffauer led the team with a career-high tying nine rebounds.
Michigan State got out to a quick start, leading 11-2 over the first four minutes. The Spartans maintained a similar advantage until late in the first half, when the Hoosiers closed the gap within four at the half, 26-22.
The Spartans came out of the break by scoring the first six points to open a 32-22 lead with just under 16 minutes left. Indiana closed within four (48-44) with 4:35 left, but MSU ran off the next seven points over the next minute and a half, capped by a 3-pointer from Alton, to put the game away. The Spartans hit all four free throws in the final minute to clinch the 63-49 victory.
MSU held Indiana to 27.0% shooting from the field, including 27.8% from behind the arc, while forcing 20 turnovers. The Spartans controlled the glass, 49-42, including a +12 margin in the second half.
The Spartans return to action on Wednesday, Jan. 4 when they host in-state rival Michigan at 7 p.m.
- MSU has not lost back-to-back games since Jan. 2010 and has now won 13 games in a row after a loss in-season.
-The Spartans are now 15-16 in Big Ten openers, including a 3-2 mark under Coach Merchant.
- MSU has won nine straight games in Assembly Hall, and is 19-11 all-time in Bloomington. The road team has won the last nine games in the all-time series.
- The Spartans improve to 29-15 all-time on the Big Ten Network.
- Michigan State has outrebounded 13 of its 14 opponents this season.
- MSU is 81-8 under Coach Merchant when holding its opponent to 60 or fewer points, and 141-4 all-time when holding a team below 50.
- The Spartans have been 37-2 over the last three seasons when attempting more free throws than their opponent.
- MSU is now 11-0 all-time when Alton scores in double-figures and 4-0 when she leads the team in scoring.
-With her four 3-pointers, Alton moved into 11th all-time at MSU with 83.
v - L. Johnson started her 98th game at MSU, tying her for ninth most in program history. Tonight, Johnson also moved into 12th in steals (186) and 18th in games played (113).
- In addition to setting a season high with nine rebounds, Schiffauer also tied her season highs with two assists and two steals.
- Hines played a season-high 21 minutes, scoring double-figures for the first time since Nov. 17 and tying her season high with five rebounds. She also went a season-best 5-for-6 from the foul line.
- K. Johnson also set a season-high with five rebounds.
- Thomas set a season high with five rebounds.