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Spartans rally for pick-me-up win

EAST LANSING, Mich. — Trailing by nine points late in the second half against a team that seldom makes mistakes, Michigan State was showing few signs of pulling out of its seasonlong funk.

Then Kalin Lucas spoke up.

"The guys had their heads down," Lucas said. "I said, 'Hey, there's a lot of time left. We're going to win this game! We just have to get stops.' "

The Spartans finished regulation on a 9-0 run, then outlasted No. 20 Wisconsin in overtime for a 64-61 victory Tuesday night.

Draymond Green scored a career-high 26 for Michigan State, and Lucas made three free throws in the final minute of overtime.

The Spartans were ranked No. 2 in the preseason poll but dropped out entirely after a loss to Penn State on Saturday. This is the first week Michigan State isn't ranked since the final poll of 2006-07.

"We talk about having a character check," coach Tom Izzo said. "I've never seen a bunch of guys get knocked down more times than we got knocked down, and in every huddle, they still thought they could win."

Green scored Michigan State's first eight of overtime, including a free throw that put the Spartans ahead 61-60 with 1:16 left. Wisconsin's Jordan Taylor tied it with a free throw with 59.1 seconds left, but Lucas drew a foul driving along the baseline and made one free throw to put Michigan State ahead 62-61 with 30.2 seconds left.

Taylor then missed from near the top of the key. Lucas, who had 17 points, added two free throws with 2.2 seconds left, and Taylor missed a desperation shot from midcourt.

Taylor scored 21 for Wisconsin (12-4, 2-2 Big Ten).

"We fell apart," Taylor said. "They turned us over and did a good job of pressuring us."

NO. 10 UCONN 67, RUTGERS 53: Alex Oriakhi had 17 points, 12 rebounds and four blocks for the host Huskies (13-2, 2-2 Big East), who followed a win at Texas with their 10th straight victory over the Scarlet Knights.

NO. 11 BYU 104, UTAH 79: Jimmer Fredette had 47 points and Jackson Emery set a school record with 197 career steals for the visiting Cougars (17-1, 3-0 Mountain West), who won their seventh straight game and fourth in a row over the Utes.

NO. 12 TEXAS 83, TEXAS TECH 52: Freshman Tristan Thompson had 20 points for the visiting Longhorns (13-3, 1-0 Big 12), who got the ball inside with ease and scored 50 in the paint.

NO. 13 KENTUCKY 78, AUBURN 54: Terrence Jones set a school freshman single-game record with 35 points for the host Wildcats (13-3, 1-1 SEC). Jones broke the record of 32 points set by teammate Doron Lamb against Winthrop last month behind a series of jumpers and layups.

PENN ST. 57, NO. 16 ILLINOIS 55: Andrew Jones converted an offensive rebound with one second left for the host Nittany Lions, who beat ranked foes in consecutive games for the first time since the 1954 NCAA Tournament after a 66-62 win Saturday over then-No. 18 Michigan State. Mike Tisdale had 16 points and 14 rebounds for the Illini (13-4, 3-1 Big Ten).

NO. 17 WASHINGTON: Coach Lorenzo Romar said the school is aware of a police investigation "about an allegation in regards to one of our student-athletes." Romar declined to go into many details.

MINNESOTA: The school is sticking with star forward Trevor Mbakwe despite his arrest on suspicion of violating a restraining order filed against him. In a statement, coach Tubby Smith confirmed that Mbakwe is still with the team, described the action as "a lapse in judgment" and announced no punishments.

USF women fall again

CHICAGO — Felicia Chester had 19 points and Keisha Hampton 18 as No. 14 DePaul handed USF its fifth straight loss, 77-61.

Andrea Smith scored 16 for the Bulls (9-9, 0-4 Big East).

The Blue Demons (16-2) have won 13 of 14 and are 4-0 in the Big East for the first time.

DePaul led by eight at the half before USF went on a 12-6 run to close within 43-41 on Leondra Doomes-Stephens' 3-pointer with 15:38 left. That woke up the Blue Demons, who used an 11-3 spurt over the next 4:47 to open up a 56-46 advantage.

MARQUETTE 69, NO. 6 W. VA. 54: Angel Robinson had 18 points and the Golden Eagles went on an 11-0 run midway through the second half just after coach Terri Mitchell was hit in the head to upset the Mountaineers (16-1, 3-1 Big East) and end the nation's longest winning streak.

NO. 17 IOWA ST. 64, NEBRASKA 43: Kelsey Bolte had 22 points for the host Cyclones (13-3, 1-1 Big 12), who blew it open with a 22-0 second-half run that lasted nine minutes.

RUTGERS 78, NO. 25 SYRACUSE 67: Monique Oliver had a career-high 27 points for the visiting Scarlet Knights, who snapped a three-game losing streak to the Orange (13-3, 1-2 Big East).

Spartans rally for pick-me-up win 01/11/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, January 12, 2011 12:15am]

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