Tom Izzo and Michigan State expired after No. 2 Spartans defeated No. 15 Bradley 76-65 on Thursday in the first round of the NCAA in Des Moines, Iowa.
Chris Solari, Detroit Free Press

DES MOINES, Iowa – Breaking off the second-round match of the Eastern Region on Saturday between No. 2 Michigan State Basketball and No. 10 Minnesota at the 2018 NCAA Tournament:

Records: Michigan State, No. 2 (29-6, 16-4 Big Ten); Golden Gophers No. 10 Minnesota (22-13, 9-11 Big Ten).

Fast facts: Appx. 7:45 pm, Saturday (CBS), at Wells Fargo Arena, Des Moines, Iowa. The winner plays next Friday in Sweet 16 vs. LSU # 3 or Maryland # 6 in Washington, D.C.

Nick Ward (44) scored 22 points and got nine rebounds when Michigan State beat Minnesota, 79-75, on Feb. 9 at the Breslin Center in East Lansing. It was the only meeting of the season between the two Big Ten opponents, who will meet again on Saturday in the second round of the NCAA tournament in Des Moines, Iowa. (Photo: Robert Killips | Lansing State Journal)

About MSU Basketball

Tournament record: 66-31, 32 years old (last appearance, 2018).

rating: Team (78.7 points per game); Cassius Winston (19.1); Nick Ward (13.8); Matt McQuaid (9.9); Xavier Tillman (9.6); Kenny Goins (8.1).

rebounds: Team (40.8) Goins (8,9); Tillman (7.2); Ward (6.2); Aaron Henry (3,6); Winston (3.1).

Business help / numbers: Team (18.7 / 12.9); Winston (7.5 / 2.9); Goins (2.3 / 1.5); McQuaid (2.2 / 0.9)

3 points: Team (0.338); Winston (76); McQuaid (67); Goins (50); Ahrens (20); Henry (11 years old).

The last 10: 9-1.

Overview: The Spartans struggled to take on Bradley (15th) in the middle of the second period, before closing the match with a 22-10 win over the final (6:24) to win a 76-65 win in the first round. Thursday at Wells Fargo Arena. Winston continued to be a good finisher, scoring eight of his 26 points, the highest score in the game. MSU also made 25 of 26 free throws, including 11 of 12 in the final at 2:04, and prevented Bradley from scoring for a 4:39 end-of-half streak while making a direct elimination 9-0. Tillman had 14 points and 11 rebounds, while McQuaid added 10 points. The Spartans won the only meeting with Minnesota, the 79-55, Feb. 9 at East Lansing.

About Minnesota basketball

Tournament record: 14-12 (8-9 with appearances released), 13 years old (last appearance, 2017).

rating: Team (71.2 points per game); Amir Coffey (16,3); Jordan Murphy (14.9); Daniel Oturu (10.9); Gabe Kalscheur (10,3); Dupree McBrayer (9.2).

rebounds: Team (37.0); Murphy (11.3); Oturu (7.1); Coffey (3.7); McBrayer (2.3).

Business help / numbers: Team (14.7 / 11.8); Coffey (3.2 / 2.4); McBrayer (3.0 / 1.2); Isaiah Washington (2.9 / 1.0); Murphy (2.7 / 2.3).

3 points: Team (0.325); Kalscheur (77); McBrayer (42); Coffey (40).

The last 10: 5-5.

Overview: The Gophers were hot at the Big Ten tournament, winning two games, including a second time against Purdue in 10 days, before losing to Michigan in the semi-finals. On Thursday, the Gophers defeated Louisville (7 seeded) by shooting 50% and scoring 11 points, while they had entered the 344th match nationally scoring 3 seconds per game. Kalscheur, first-year goaltender, scored 24 points and five points, while Coffey and Murphy each scored 18 points. It was Richard Pitino's first victory in the NCAA in six seasons in Minneapolis, less than four hours from Des Moines. On Saturday, it will be the first time that Minnesota and the MSU will meet in an NCAA tournament and the first match between two Big Ten teams since the number of players has increased to 64 in 1985.

Forecast: MSU 78, Minnesota 70

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