EAST LANSING, Mich. â€“ The Michigan State womenâ€™s basketball team improved to 4-0 in Big Ten play, utilizing a 12-0 run late in the second half to pull away from Indiana, 67-47 on Thursday night at Breslin Center. Senior Porsche Poole scored a game-high 16 points, and freshman Kiana Johnson dished out a season-high 10 assists in the win.
The game started with a back-and-forth affair, including six lead changes and five ties in the first 10 minutes. Michigan State would then take the lead, 21-20 with 10:04 to go in the half and not trail the rest of the way. Poole sunk a 3-pointer as time expired for intermission, giving MSU 33-27 halftime lead.
After leading by only six at the break, the Spartans outscored Indiana, 34-20 in the second half, shooting 59.1% from the field. MSUâ€™s lead grew to double-figures midway through the final 20 minutes, but the Hoosiers hung around, getting within six with 5:36 remaining. However, Michigan State ran off the next 12 points over a four minute span to jump ahead 64-46. Free throws late by MSU sealed the 67-47 final.
Poole was 6-for-8 from the field in 28 minutes off the bench to reach double-figures for the third straight game. Senior Lykendra Johnson added 13 points and led MSU with seven rebounds.
With her season-high assist total tonight, K. Johnson now has 19 assists and only four turnovers in two games against IU this season. She also added four steals to her stat line.
Michigan State forced Indiana into 25 turnovers, and has caused 50 turnovers against its last two opponents.
The Spartans return to Breslin Center Sunday, when they host No. 11 Ohio State at 4 p.m. on ESPN2.
– MSU starts 4-0 in Big Ten play for the second straight season and for only the fourth time in program history.
– The Spartans have won 27 of their last 31 Big Ten games.
– The Spartans are now 40-23 all-time against Indiana and 18-11 in East Lansing. Tonightâ€™s win snapped a stretch of nine games in the series where the road team won.
– Michigan State is 12-0 this season when attempting at least 12 free throws. The Spartans are 8-0 this season and 39-2 over the last three seasons when attempting more free throws than their opponent.
– The Spartans have won 26 of their last 28 games at the Breslin Center.
– MSU has won its last 49 games when leading with five minutes remaining.
– The Spartans are 142-4 all-time when holding an opponent below 50 points.
– With her seven rebounds tonight, Lykendra Johnson became the fifth Spartan to surpass 900 career rebounds. She is only 18 rebounds away from tying Allyssa DeHaan (919) for fourth all-time in MSU history.
– L. Johnson also moved into the top-10 in career steals at MSU with 196.
– Kiana Johnsonâ€™s season high 10 assists are tied for the 16th most in a MSU single-game and the most since Brittney Thomas also had 10 at Iowa on Feb. 7, 2010.
– K. Johnson now has 70 assists on the season, already tying for the sixth most by a Spartan freshman.
– K. Johnson played a season high 37 minutes.
– Poole led MSU in scoring for a team-best seventh time.
– Courtney Schiffauer set a season high with two 3-point field goals. It was her most since Dec. 18, 2010.