Michigan State cruises past Northwestern
EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Adreian Payne had 20 points and 14 rebounds, and No. 9 Michigan State cruised past Northwestern 85-70 on Thursday night to stay tied atop the Big Ten.
The Spartans (21-4, 10-2) are even in the standings with rival Michigan — and those two teams meet in Ann Arbor on Feb. 23.
Gary Harris added 14 points for Michigan State, rebounding a bit from a poor shooting performance in a loss to Wisconsin last weekend. The Spartans shot 53 percent from the field against a Northwestern team that came in with a sterling defensive reputation.
The Wildcats (12-13, 5-7) had not allowed 80 points in a game in over a month.
Michigan State was without point guard Keith Appling, who has been bothered by a wrist injury.
No. 18 CREIGHTON 68, BUTLER 63
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Doug McDermott scored 26 points and made the go-ahead 3-pointer with 47.8 seconds left to give Creighton a win over Butler.
The Bluejays (20-4, 10-2 Big East) have won five of six and 15 of 17, and are now within a half game of No. 6 Villanova in the conference standings.
Kellen Dunham had 16 points and Alex Barlow added 13 for Butler (12-13, 2-11), which has lost four straight.
After leading most of the first half, Creighton found itself in a back-and-forth struggle most of the second half and couldn’t fend off Butler’s charges until McDermott hit the 3 to make it 64-63.
Andrew Chrabascz had two chances to give Butler a late lead but twice lost the ball and a 3 from Dunham that might have forced overtime was short.
No. 21 WISCONSIN 78, MINNESOTA 70
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Frank Kaminsky scored 17 points and Wisconsin regained some of its frontcourt swagger in a win over Minnesota.
Fellow forward Nigel Hayes added 15 for the Badgers, who kept Minnesota in the game following late free-throw woes.
But Wisconsin (20-5, 7-5 Big Ten) benefited from a hot start up front. The Badgers are at their best active in the lane, and that was the case on both ends of the floor in building a 13-point lead against sloppy Minnesota (16-9, 5-7).
Outside shooting helped the Gophers hang around after Austin Hollins and Malik Smith hit 3s on back-to-back possessions to get to 73-68 with 55.2 seconds left.
Ben Brust finally sealed the win with two foul shots for an eight-point lead with 38 seconds left.