Michigan State Keeps NCAA Tournament Hopes Alive

Keith Appling; Eric May

Keith Appling; Eric May (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Michigan State played a must-win game against Iowa Thursday and did just that. The Spartans finished with a five point lead and shut down the Hawkeyes.

Draymond Green had 21 points and 14 rebounds to help Michigan State beat Iowa 66-61 on Thursday in the first round of the Big Ten tournament and keep its NCAA tournament hopes alive.

Iowa’s Matt Gatens missed a 3-pointer that could have tied the game with 6 seconds remaining.

Kalin Lucas scored 11 points and Keith Appling added 10 for Michigan State, which advanced to play No. 9 Purdue (25-6) in the quarterfinals.

Michigan State (18-13) has played in the last two Final Fours and hasn’t missed the NCAA tournament since the 1996-97 season, but the seventh-seeded Spartans felt they needed to beat 10th-seeded Iowa to boost their chances of continuing that streak.

Bryce Cartwright had 14 points, seven rebounds and six assists and Gatens had 13 points for Iowa (11-20), which was coming off a win over then-No. 6 Purdue.

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