MSU erases second-half deficit, edges Iowa

February 7, 2018 GMT

Iowa City, Iowa — Michigan State has been flirting with disaster for a while, and on Tuesday night at Iowa, it came as close to getting burned as it has all season.

But instead of crumbling, the Spartans did what they’ve done the better part of the last couple weeks by finding a way to win, erasing an eight-point deficit in the final eight minutes to pull out a 96-93 victory at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

Miles Bridges scored 25 to lead Michigan State (23-3, 11-2 Big Ten), which has won seven straight heading into Saturday’s top-five matchup with No. 3 Purdue.

Nick Ward added 17 points on a night he was plagued by foul trouble while Joshua Langford scored 15 and Jaren Jackson Jr. had 11.

Tyler Cook scored 26 for Iowa (12-14, 3-10) while Jordan Bohannon scored 17 and Maishe Dailey added 13 points. Cordell Pemsl and Isaiah Moss had 11 each for the Hawkeyes.

BOX SCORE: Michigan State 96, Iowa 93

Michigan State started quickly, especially in the paint as Ward and Jackson controlled things early, scoring 14 of the Spartans’ first 16 points. However, both picked up two fouls and played just seven minutes each.

Iowa took advantage by scoring 20 points in the paint to remain within reach of Michigan State, which led by nine at several points during the first half. The Hawkeyes tied the score at 26 following a Bohannon 3-pointer with 8:33 to play, but the Spartans responded by pushing the lead back to eight after a three-point play from Bridges gave them a 36-28 lead with 5:43 left in the first half.

Bridges extended the lead to 47-38 on a 3-pointer with 1:24 to play before Iowa cut it to 48-42 headed to halftime. The 42 points scored by the Hawkeyes were the most Michigan State has allowed in a first half this season as Iowa shot 54.5 percent (18-for-33).

After a Langford 3-pointer gave Michigan State a 55-46 lead less than two minutes into the second half, the fouls starting playing a factor as Ward was whistled for his third and Jackson followed a couple minutes later.

Iowa took advantage, as it did in the first half, chipping away at Michigan State’s lead before finally moving ahead for the first time at 61-60 on a pair of free throws from Moss. It went back and forth the next few possessions as Iowa dominated in the paint, and after a Bohannon 3-pointer with 12:23 to play, the Hawkeyes had a 68-64 lead.

The Hawkeyes kept the pressure on and when Dailey nailed a 3-pointer from the corner with 8:06 to play, it gave Iowa an 81-73 lead. Winston answered with a 3-pointer but Michigan State came up empty on its next two possessions after getting a pair of stops.

Michigan State pulled within 85-83 after a pair of Winston free throws, but Bohannon answered with a deep 3-pointer and after a Langford jumper, Iowa got one free throw from Cook to lead by four. But Bridges converted on a layup and Kenny Goins rattled in a 3-pointer with 2:10 to play to put MSU up 90-89.

A Cook jump hook put Iowa back ahead by one before Bridges gave MSU a one-point advantage with 1:02 to play with a pair of free throws. Bridges got two more with 31 seconds left and after Cook brought Iowa within a point, Langford nailed two with 6.5 seconds left to give MSU a 96-93 lead.

A desperation 3-pointer from Iowa hit off the rim at the buzzer.