Michigan State defeats The Citadel Bulldogs, 82-56


Following a disappointing overtime loss to Texas Southern, Saturday, Michigan State bounced back with a dominating win over The Citadel Bulldogs Monday night, in East Lansing. Michigan State moves to 9-4 (6-1 home) as they continue to make their way through their up and down season.

Michigan State was led by guard Denzel Valentine, who led the Spartans with 18 points, six rebounds, six assist.  They were also able to get quality minutes from forward, Gavin Schilling who stepped in for the injured Branden Dawson. Schilling chipped in with 12 points and four rebounds.

The win did not come as easy as it looked for the Spartans, who have struggled in their past two games. If it were not for a 26-0 run in a span close to 10 minutes, Michigan State would have been in another close game against another sub-par team.

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It was not until the second half where Michigan State found their stride, which was led by their defense. Despite losing some talent to the NBA, the Spartan’s defense held strong, holding the Bulldogs to a woeful 41.7% from the floor and struggling from the three-point line, going a less than impressive 8-21.

In addition to holding the Bulldogs to 41 percent shooting, they were able to keep the Bulldogs without a field goal for the first 11:12 after the half.

Despite missing forward Branden Dawson, Michigan State was still able to score in the paint and move the ball efficiently assisting on 23 of their 34 made field goals.

In the win, Michigan State shot the third-best percentage from the free-throw line this season, connecting on 73.7 percent of their free-throws.  The 60.4 percent shooting marks the second highest shooting mark the Spartans have had this season.

A small area of concern for Michigan State is their lost touch from the three-point line. Over the past two games, Michigan State has shot a combined 8-32 from three, shooting an embarrassing 25 percent during that short span.

At 9-4, this Michigan State team is not as good as the team they had last year. The numbers are the same, but the lack of experience and mediocre free-throw shooting could be the cause of an early tournament for the Spartans. Should they make it there this year.

Up Next for Michigan State is the No. 15 ranked Maryland, December 30th at the Breslin Center in East Lansing, MI.