Jan. 3, 2011
Box Score |
EVANSTON, Ill. -- Trailing 63-50 with 3:47 remaining, Northwestern put together a 12-0 run to pull within one on a Michael Thompson lay-up with 28.2 seconds remaining. But the Wildcats rally came up just short, falling to 18th-ranked Michigan State 65-62 at Welsh-Ryan Arena.
Drew Crawford led the way with 17 points and eight rebounds, with Thompson adding 12 points for the Wildcats and John Shurna contributing 11.
Down one following Thompson's lay-in, NU sent Kalin Lucas to the free throw line for a one-and-one with 14 seconds left. The senior point guard missed his first attempt, but Draymond Green came up with the rebound and a put-back to increase the Spartans' advantage to three.
Thompson's potential game-tying triple try was off the mark on the other end, but Crawford came up with the rebound and the 'Cats called a timeout with nine-tenths of a second to go. Following a timeout, Crawford's desperation 3-pointer from the corner was off the mark allowing MSU to escape.
In a closely contested first half, Northwestern took a 19-17 lead with 11:14 to go following back-to-back 3-pointers by Michigan natives Davide Curletti and Alex Marcotullio.
However, Michigan State answered with a 10-1 run to go in front 27-20 with seven minutes to go before the intermission. The guests' lead was nine with two minutes left in the half, but JerShon Cobb made three from the line to trim the deficit to six. In the closing seconds, Shurna came up with a loose ball and make a tremendous feed from the ground to a streaking Crawford for a layup as the first half expired to get NU within 35-31.
Northwestern would attempt 20 free throws in the contest before the Spartans ever got to the charity stripe. A trey by Crawford got the Wildcats to within three points with 13 minutes remaining.
However, NU went ice-cold from the field. The hosts connected on just four of their first 23 field goal attempts in the second stanza as Michigan State pulled away for a 63-50 lead with 3:47 left on a jumper by Lucas.
But the Northwestern offense finally got hot in the closing moments to make things very interesting. Back-to-back buckets by Thompson preceded a 3-pointer by Curletti to make it a six-point contest with 1:56 left.
After consecutive misses by Durrell Summers and a missed front end of the bonus by Green, the Wildcats inched closer on a triple by Thompson to make it 63-60 with 1:13 to go. Curletti then drew an offensive foul on Green to give Northwestern the ball back.
Thompson's backdoor lay-in off a feed from Marcotullio got NU to within a single point with 28.2 seconds left, but Northwestern ran out of time.
NU shot just 31.6 percent from the field in the contest to 48.3 percent for Michigan State. The Wildcats connected on 16 of 24 free throw attempts to just one of five for the Spartans.
Northwestern returns to action at 8 p.m. Thursday as it travels to Illinois.