Davis leads Michigan State past Trojans
Grand Rapids, MI (Sports Network) – Paul Davis scored a game-high 23 points
and Maurice Ager added 22, leading 13th-ranked Michigan State to a 72-67 win
over Arkansas-Little Rock at Van Andel Arena.
Shannon Brown buried a big three-pointer down the stretch and finished with 14
points for the Spartans (5-2), who shook off a sloppy first half for their
fourth straight win.
Lekheythan Malone led Arkansas-Little Rock with 19 points, while Elijah
Muldrow contributed 15 points in the loss. The Trojans (3-2) played tough for
the entire 40 minutes against their ranked opponent, but saw a three-game
winning streak come to an end.
Michigan State roared out of the locker room and grabbed a 44-32 cushion on
Brown’s three-pointer early in the second half. The Trojans kept plugging
and pulled within 47-42 on a Malone foul shot with less than 10 minutes to go.
The Spartans eventually regained their double-digit lead at 53-42 on a Davis
jumper, but Arkansas-Little Rock trimmed the deficit to 55-50 courtesy of a
Rashad Jones-Jennings basket.
With less than four minutes remaining, Michigan State got a boost when Brown
knocked down another three-pointer to make it 62-54. The Trojans pulled within
70-65 on three free throws by Zack Wright, who was fouled behind the arc with
24 seconds remaining in the game.
Michigan State, though, never relinquished the lead and held on for a win in
the first-ever meeting between both schools on the hardwood.
DeAndre Eggins buried a three-pointer early in the game to give Arkansas-
Little Rock an 11-7 advantage. Malone later sank two free throws for a 23-16
Trojan lead with 6:54 to go in the first half. The Spartans, however, scored
nine in a row and grabbed a 25-23 lead on Ager’s two-handed dunk with three
Arkansas Little-Rock took back the lead at 28-27 thanks to a Muldrow three,
but a Brown trey put MSU ahead by a 30-28 score. Malone was then fouled before
time expired in the first half and made both free throws for a 30-30 game at
Malone led all scorers at the break with 10 points, while Ager paced the
Spartans with nine points.
Michigan State will play Boston College on Tuesday, while the Trojans take on
Illinois on Monday…MSU’s Breslin Center was in use this weekend…Brown sank
3-of-7 from beyond the arc…Malone made 3-of-5 shots from three-point range
and Muldrow nailed three of his seven attempts from beyond the arc.