Tuesday's college basketball: No. 25 Michigan State women dispatch Oakland 94-56

Associated Press

East Lansing — Nia Clouden led a balanced attack with 15 points and No. 25 Michigan State celebrated its first Top 25 ranking this season with red-hot shooting in a 94-56 win over Oakland on Tuesday.

The Spartans (7-0) made 39 of 60 shots from the field (65%) in continuing their best start since opening 8-0 eight years ago.

Nia Clouden had 15 points in Michigan State's 92-52 defeat at No. 7 Maryland on Thursday.

Julia Ayrault added 14 points, Moira Joiner 13 and Alyza Winston 12 for Michigan State as the four double-figure scorers combined to make 21 of 30 shots. Janai Crooms grabbed 10 rebounds and Ayrault had nine to help the Spartans dominate the boards 43-25 and score 48 points in the paint.

Kahlaijah Dean scored 15 points to lead Oakland (3-4), which made just 2 of 20 3-point shots and finished at 34% (22 of 64) from the field.

Michigan State never trailed but only led 42-31 at the half and 44-37 early in the third quarter. Clouden’s three-point play started a 10-0 run that became a 27-4 surge. When Kendall Bostic made consecutive baskets with less than three minutes to go in the second quarter, the Spartans led 71-41. Clouden had nine points in the run.

Michigan State’s next scheduled game is at Purdue on Jan. 3 to open Big Ten Conference play.

State men

►Ball State 76, (at) Western Michigan 68: K.J. Walton had 20 points and Ball State topped Western Michigan.

Luke Bumbalough had 17 points for Ball State (4-3, 2-0 Mid-American Conference) and Brachen Hazen added 15 points. Ishmael El-Amin had seven assists and six rebounds.

B. Artis White tied a career high with 20 points for the Broncos (2-5, 1-1). Rafael Cruz Jr. added 18 points and seven rebounds. Jason Whitens had 10 points.

Big Ten

►(At) No. 4 Iowa 70, Purdue 55: Luka Garza scored 22 points, Joe Wieskamp added 17 and Iowa beat Purdue in the lowest-scoring game of the season for the Hawkeyes, who entered leading the nation with 98.7 points per game.

Iowa outrebounded Purdue 37-35 and held the Boilermakers to 39.7% shooting and their second-lowest scoring output of the season.

Garza, who came into the game leading the nation in scoring at 29.3 points per game, scored 10 of the first 16 points for the Hawkeyes (7-1, 1-0 Big Ten), who were coming off a 99-88 loss to No. 1 Gonzaga on Saturday.

Garza has scored 20 or more points in 17 consecutive Big Ten games, the longest streak in the conference since Ohio State’s Dennis Hopson had 16 in 1987. Garza was 7 of 14 from the field, including 4 of 8 in 3-pointers.

Garza and Wieskamp added nine rebounds each.

Trevion Williams led Purdue (6-3, 1-1) with 14 points and nine rebounds. Brandon Newman added 11 points.

►(At) No. 9 Wisconsin 67, Nebraska 53: Brad Davison had 15 points and a career-high seven assists, and the No. 9 Badgers overcame a dreadful start to beat the Cornhuskers in the Big Ten opener for both teams.

Micah Potter added 10 points and 11 rebounds and sparked a key 14-0 run late in the first half. Fifth-year senior Aleem Ford celebrated his 24th birthday with 13 points and eight rebounds to help the Badgers (7-1) earn their ninth straight conference victory and 15th straight home win. 

The Badgers closed the pandemic-shortened 2019-20 season by winning eight straight conference games to share the Big Ten regular-season title with Maryland and Michigan State.

Dalano Banton scored 15 points, Teddy Allen had 11 and Trey McGowens added 10 for Nebraska (4-4).

►(At) Maryland 84, La Salle 71: Eric Ayala scored 23 points, Aaron Wiggins scored 15 and Maryland controlled most of the way.

Ayala made 13-for-15 foul shots, Wiggins had nine rebounds, Hakim Hart scored 13 points, Donta Scott 11 and Jairus Hamilton 10 for Maryland.

The Terrapins (6-2) overcame 21-missed 3-point attempts (7 for 28) by shooting 23 for 37 (62%) inside the arc. Maryland had a 44-14 points-in-the-paint advantage.

Sherif Kenney scored 16 points for the Explorers (3-5) and Jack Clark, Anwar Gil and Clifton Moore each scored 12. La Salle shot 13 fewer foul shots (7 for 11) than the Terps (17 for 24).

Hamilton's 3 with 11:50 before halftime gave Maryland a 20-9 lead. The Explorers paired their deficit to 27-21 4½ minutes later with Kenney's 3, but Hamilton made another 3 to start a 13-4 run to end the half and Maryland led 40-25. La Salle never got within seven points (52-45) the rest of the way.

Top 25

►(At) No. 1 Gonzaga 95, Northwestern State 78: Top-ranked Gonzaga was coasting to another victory over Northwestern State, but then suddenly found itself in a dogfight and had to rely on star forward Drew Timme to seal the win.

Timme had 25 points and nine rebounds as the Bulldogs held off a late challenge to beat Northwestern State for the second night in a row.

After managing just 17 points in the first half, the Demons poured in 61 over the final 20 minutes to make it a game. Northwestern State hit 10 3-pointers in the second period.

Jalen Suggs added 19 points and Corey Kispert had 18 for Gonzaga (6-0), which owns the nation’s longest home win streak at 41 games.

Jairus Roberson scored 15 points to lead Northwestern State (1-9), which was playing its fourth game in five nights. Jovan Zelenbaba and Trenton Massner each had 14.

►(At) No. 3 Kansas 79, No. 7 West Virginia 65: Christian Braun knocked down six 3-pointers and score 22 points, and Jalen Wilson hit four 3s and scored 17, as No. 3 Kansas cruised past the seventh-ranked Mountaineers.

Marcus Garrett added 15 points, Ochai Agbaji had 11 points and 10 rebounds, and David McCormack added 10 points and 11 boards as the Jayhawks (8-1, 2-0 Big 12) won their fifth straight against the Mountaineers.

Kansas trailed by a point at halftime before Braun and Wilson heated up, carrying the Jayhawks to their eighth consecutive victory overall. Their lone loss came in the opener against top-ranked Gonzaga, and their win streak has included victories over No. 20 Kentucky on a neutral floor, eighth-ranked Creighton and No. 14 Texas Tech on the road.

Sean McNeil made six 3-pointers and scored 24 points to lead West Virginia (6-2, 1-1), though almost all of his production came in the first half, when the outcome was still hanging in the balance. Miles McBride added 19 points, but the bruising duo of Oscar Tschiebwe and Derek Culver was held to a combined 11 points and 12 rebounds.

►(At) No. 6 Houston 76, Temple 50: Quentin Grimes had 22 points and seven rebounds, Justin Gorham had 14 points and 12 boards and No. 6 Houston beat Temple in the American Athletic Conference opener for both teams.

Grimes scored at least 20 points for the third straight game as the Cougars shot 48%, including 10 of 26 on 3-pointers. Reggie Chaney had 13 points and Tramon Mark scored 12 for Houston (6-0).

J.P. Moorman II scored 12 points and Brendan Barry had nine for Temple (1-1), which shot 29%.

►(At) No. 14 Missouri 54, Bradley 53: Jeremiah Tilmon’s three-point play with a second left lifted Missouri over Bradley.

Down eight with under four minutes to go, Missouri (6-0) went on a 6-0 run in the final 1:33 to spoil Bradley’s upset bid in dramatic fashion.

On the Tigers’ final possession, Xavier Pinson found Tilmon in the post on the left block. With time ticking down, Tilmon power-dribbled to the basket and forced a foul from Elijah Childs, finishing through the contact and earning a trip to the free-throw line to win the game. 

Tilmon sank the foul shot, and Mitchell Smith swatted away two inbounds passes by the Braves (6-3) to clinch it.

►No. 15 Texas Tech 69, (at) Oklahoma 67: Terrence Shannon Jr. scored 21 points and Marcus Santos-Silva had 18 to help Texas Tech hold off Oklahoma.

Mac McClung added 16 points for Tech (7-2, 1-1 Big 12), which was coming off a one-point home loss to Kansas.

De’Vion Harmon scored 17 points and Austin Reaves added 13 for Oklahoma (5-2, 1-1), which made just 17 of 27 free throws. Brady Manek, Oklahoma’s leading scorer this season, finished with two points on 1-for-7 shooting.

Texas Tech, leading by three, fouled Harmon with 4 seconds left. Harmon made the first free throw, then missed the second intentionally. Victor Iwuakor rebounded for Oklahoma and was fouled with 2.8 seconds to play. He missed the first free throw, then missed the second intentionally. Oklahoma had several chances at a putback — Reaves had the best look — but none of the shots went in.

►(At) No. 16 Virginia 76, William & Mary 40: Trey Murphy III scored seven of his 15 points during a 13-0 first-half run and Virginia returned from a long coronavirus-related pause to beat William & Mary.

The Cavaliers (4-1) were playing for the first time since they beat Kent State on Dec. 4 but showed few signs of rust as they cashed in on their first five possessions to take an 11-2 lead. A 13-0 run came shortly thereafter as William & Mary went 7:52 without scoring.

Yuri Covington’s 12 points led the Tribe (2-3), which never recovered. They lost their 12th straight in the series, which Virginia leads 56-26. William & Mary’s last victory against the Cavaliers came in 1984-85.

►(At) North Carolina State 79, No. 17 North Carolina 76: Devon Daniels scored eight straight points in the second half and finished with 21 to help North Carolina State beat North Carolina.

Freshman Shakeel Moore scored 17 points for the Wolfpack (5-1, 1-0 Atlantic Coast Conference), who blew nearly all of a 17-point first-half lead in an unusually early meeting in the longtime rivalry. 

But N.C. State responded with a 14-2 run after UNC (5-2, 0-1) got within a point, then did just enough down the stretch to hold off the Tar Heels’ late rally to win for only the fifth time in 37 meetings.