Michigan State pummels Houston Baptist, 107-62
East Lansing – Call it the dog days of the college basketball season.
With the meat of the nonconference schedule in the rearview mirror and Big Ten play set to resume after the new year, Michigan State took the court against Houston Baptist on Monday night at the Breslin Center and it hardly would have won any awards for putting together a basketball masterpiece.
But a sloppy first half suddenly turned into second full of records as No. 2 Michigan State rolled over Houston Baptist, 107-62, for its 10th consecutive victory.
BOX SCORE: Michigan State 107, Houston Baptist 62
Miles Bridges matched a career-high with 33 points on 11-for-14 shooting for the Spartans (11-1, 2-0 Big Ten). Cassius Winston handed out a career-best 12 assists to go with 10 points and Michigan State blocked 16 shots, establishing a single-game record.
The Spartans twice have had 13 blocks — in a victory at Rutgers two weeks ago and in 2007 against San Jose State. Jaren Jackson had six blocks on Monday while Nick Ward had four. Ward also scored 20 on 9-for-9 shooting while Joshua Langford added 14 points.
Things were far from perfect, however, especially in the opening 20 minutes.
The biggest issue was the fact Houston Baptist held the rebounding advantage for most of the game before Michigan State pulled away late, outrebounding the Huskies 43-39. Houston Baptist did grab 27 offensive rebounds, including 15 in the first half alone against a Michigan State team that entered the game fourth in the nation in rebounding margin.
Jalon Gates scored 17 points to lead Houston Baptist (4-8) while Ian DuBose and Braxton Bonds scored 10 points each for the Huskies.
Michigan State could hardly miss in the first half shooting 70 percent (21-for-30) from the field while scoring on 24 of its 29 possessions it did not turn the ball over.
However, there were eight turnovers for the Spartans, who also were outrebounded by Houston Baptist, 22-17, in the first half. Bridges scored 20 in the first half on 8-for-11 shooting, while Langford and Ward each had 10.
Michigan State slowly began to pull away in the second half. The Spartans reached the 100-point mark for the first time since scoring 100 in a win last season over Mississippi Valley State. The 107 points were the most the Spartans have scored since scoring 110 against Nebraska-Omaha in 2011.