National Basketball Association
Michigan St 78, Maryland 66
When: 8:00 PM ET, Saturday, February 29, 2020
Where: XFINITY Center, College Park, Maryland
# Robert Riley, # Bo Boroski, # Brandon Cruz
No. 24 Michigan State knocked off host No. 9 Maryland 78-66 Saturday night in College Park, Md., continuing the Spartans' torrid run and tightening up the Big Ten Conference race heading into the final week of the regular season.
Four players scored in double figures, led by Cassius Winston with 20 points and six assists, as the Spartans (20-9, 12-6 Big Ten) won for the fourth time in the last five games and closed to within a game of league-leading Maryland.
The Terrapins (23-6, 13-5) got 20 points and 12 rebounds from Jalen Smith but fell for the second time in the last three games and failed to clinch at least a share of their first Big Ten crown.
It was also Maryland's first home loss at Xfinity Center this season after starting 15-0. The defeat snapped a 16-game home winning streak.
Illinois and Wisconsin also moved within a game of Maryland, and Penn State and Iowa are just two games back.
Leading by 11 at half, Michigan State hit eight of their first 10 shots in the second half and led by 61-43 with 13:05 remaining when Malik Hall hit two free throws on his way to 16 points. The Terrapins never got closer than nine points after that salvo.
Smith, who posted his 11th double-double in the last 12 games, hit a short hook to make it 66-57 with 7:28 to play.
Winston had a big 4-point play with 4:19 left, hitting a three and adding a free throw after Maryland had closed to within 72-61. Xavier Tillman had 14 points and 12 rebounds, and Rocket Watts added 13 points for Michigan State, which plays at Penn State on Tuesday.
The Spartans led 40-29 at the half, with Winston hitting a 55-foot shot at the buzzer, the last of his 13 points in that frame.
Michigan State had started out hitting six of the first seven shots to lead 9-0, and then 14-2 at 16:04 on Aaron Henry's 3-pointer. The Terrapins battled back, closing to within 19-18 at 11:04 on a Smith stickback, but the Spartans would close the half on a 15-6 spree.
The Michigan State win avenged a tough 67-60 home loss to the Terrapins on Feb. 15, with the Spartans letting a 7-point lead slip away as the Terrapins scored the game's final 14 points, including 11 by Anthony Cowan Jr., who had 13 points in this one.
Maryland travels to Rutgers on Tuesday and finishes up at home March 8 with Michigan.
--Field Level Media
Top Game Performances
Cassius Winston 20
Jalen Smith 20
Xavier Tillman 6
Anthony Cowan Jr. 3
Xavier Tillman 12
Jalen Smith 12
Malik Hall 5
||Free Throws Made
Jalen Smith 6
Kyle Ahrens 1
Ricky Lindo Jr. 1
Xavier Tillman 2
Jalen Smith 2
Team Stats Summary