The scene was set — #4 Michigan State was hosting #1 Indiana — the crowd was charged up, and the two teams delivered a classic battle, but the Spartans came up just short in the end.
Michigan State held a four point lead with just a minute and a half to go, but a late 7-0 run by the Hoosiers turned the tide and had the Spartans looking for some late-game heroics.
And they nearly got their chance.
Gary Harris was fouled while shooting a three pointer with 3.7 seconds left in the game. He had a chance for three free throws that could have tied the game, but immediately missed the first shot. He made the second but was forced to intentionally miss the third in hopes of an offensive rebound. Indiana grabbed the ensuing rebound and was able to salt the game away at the line and pull to a 72-68 victory.
Michigan State was lead in defeat by Gary Harris, who had 19 points, and Adreiane Payne with 17 points. Keith Appling was held to six points on 1-8 shooting — his second poor game against Indiana. Indiana’s win gives them a one game lead atop the Big Ten standings — Michigan State remains in second place, a game and a half in front of the Michigan Wolverines.
The Spartans return to action on Sunday when they travel to Columbus to face the Ohio State Buckeyes.