The Michigan State Spartan women turned in a dominating effort as a team to move to 2-0 on the season after defeating in-state foe the University of Detroit Mercy Titans 82-45 Wednesday night.
The Spartans faced a tough foe to start the game as UDM used its three-point shooting early on to keep the game close. The Titans started out making two of their first five shots deep, and managed just two more three-point field goals for the remainder of the game. MSU led 21-17 at the end of the first quarter. Tory Ozment helped with the early lead by taking advantage of the Titans’ 2-3 zone to hit a pair of open threes from the corner. Ozment, a junior forward, had a big night throughout the game, including finding great feeds down low like in this third quarter possession:
In the second quarter, the Spartans started to assert themselves down low. Sophomore forward Taiyier Parks helped clear space for herself down low for easy baskets, and assisted clearing out the paint for rebounds as MSU would finish the first half with 14 offensive boards total. Parks finished the game second in scoring with 12 points, and second in rebounds with eight. MSU closed out the first half with a 36-24 lead.
MSU came out and pushed their lead early-on in the third quarter to as many as 20 at one point, but UDM went on an 8-0 run to trim it to 12 with just 3:38 left in the quarter. The Spartans responded with their own 12-3 run to close out the third quarter up 58-37.
Michigan State ended the game with a 24-8 scoring advantage in the final period. The Spartans ended the game with a total of 32 made field goals on 26 assists. MSU had just 12 turnovers while managing 13 steals and two blocks. State dominated down low with 46 points in the paint, and pushed the ball with 30 points on fast break attempts. MSU had 19 second chance points, which also made a big difference in the scoring advantage as well.
Nia Clouden led in scoring with 15 points, while five other Spartans finished in double-digits. Taiyier has 12; Ozment and Alyza Winston both had 11; and Moira Joiner and Julia Ayrault both scored 10. Joiner led the team with six assists, Ozment was second with five, and Clouden and Ayrault both had four. Kendall Bostic led the team in blocks with both coming from her. Mardrekia Cook led in boards with nine.
The Spartans’ next game will be opening Big Ten play on the road at Minnesota next Wednesday, Dec. 9 at 9 p.m. EST. I