Michigan State uses big 2nd half to beat Gophers

Published 8:57 am Tuesday, January 31, 2017

After an even first half, Minnesota briefly led Michigan State in the third quarter before falling 93-74. Kenisha Bell led the Golden Gophers (11-11, 2-7 Big Ten) with 24 points on Play4Kay night at Williams Arena. Bryanna Fernstrom had her second double-double of the year with 18 points and 10 rebounds

The Spartans (15-7, 5-4 Big Ten) outscored the Gophers 53-34 in the second half after a 40-40 first half. Michigan State ended the game with 48 rebounds to Minnesota’s 35, and shot 48.5 percent to Minnesota’s 38.3. Tori Jankoska led the visitors with 20 points, 14 rebounds and seven assists.

Both teams scored high volumes of points at the free throw line. Minnesota made a season-high 25 of 33 free throw attempts, and Michigan State was 23-of-33.

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Carlie Wagner scored 18 points.

How it happened

First quarter

Minnesota jumped out to an early lead before the Spartans caught up about midway through the quarter. Michigan State had a seven-point lead buoyed by three 3-pointers in the quarter.

Second quarter

The Gophers went on an 8-0 run propelled by Wagner, Bell and Joanna Hedstrom in the middle of the second to take a 30-28 lead. The Spartans went up five with two minutes left, but Bell scored twice and Wagner made a put-back to tie the game at 40 with nine seconds left in the half.

Third quarter

Minnesota’s last lead of the game came on a Whitney Tinjum 3-pointer with 7:46 left in the third to make it 43-42. Michigan’s lead fluctuated and grew to 13 by the end of the quarter.

Fourth quarter

Fernstrom scored nine points in the final frame, but the Gophers could not cut the lead to single digits.

More notes

*Wagner began the season 23rd on Minnesota’s career scoring list.

*Bell has six 20-point games this season.

*Fernstrom’s double-double was the seventh by a Gopher this season.

Coming up next

The Gophers will travel to Nebraska for a Saturday game. The 5 p.m. contest will be televised on BTN.