Michigan’s EAST LANSING — Moments before his team played its first home game since a campus shooting that left three students dead and five more hospitalized, Michigan State coach Tom Izzo looked into the crowd with tears welling in his eyes.
Izzo remembered as his voice broke with emotion, “It was one of those situations where I just said, ‘I’m a lucky guy. “I hope we can come through for you,” I whispered to myself.
Eight days after a mass massacre claimed lives, put others in risk, and alarmed an entire neighborhood, Tyson Walker overcame a sluggish start to score 23 points and lead Michigan State to an 80-65 victory over No. 17 Indiana on Tuesday night.
It was undoubtedly emotional, according to Walker. “Since everybody was on campus, everyone was participating in some manner. Hence, playing well for everyone while out there was definitely a good thing.
Walker started making 3-pointers after starting the game 0-for-4 from the field, which helped the Spartans (17-10, 9-7 Big Ten) jump into the lead late in the first half. The Spartans led by double digits throughout the majority of the second half.
Izzo’s teams excel at playing. They play with intensity,” noted Indiana coach Mike Woodson. “They compel you to play aggressively. You will lose if you don’t meet that requirement.
Trayce Jackson-Davis, who averages 19 points, seven rebounds, and five assists, was greatly relied upon by the Hoosiers (19-9, 10-7).
As a result of the shootings, Michigan State’s prior home game against Minnesota was postponed. The team resumed play on Saturday night and lost to rival Michigan on the road.
Pregame statements paid tribute to the shooters from last week, their victims, survivors, and first responders. Izzo also gazed left, right, high, and low at the spectators during a brief period of quiet that was broken by the Michigan State band playing “MSU Shadows.”
Izzo stated, “I wish I could have rushed up to that front row and thanked everyone who was there.
White shirts were placed on eight seats in the student section’s first row in order to reserve them for the eight victims of the school shooting. The last of the three students killed was laid to rest early on Tuesday.
After an emotional pregame, the Spartans started the game slowly before turning it around with 3-pointers, defense, and rebounding.
A.J. Hoggard of Michigan State started the game with three turnovers, but after that, he didn’t commit another and finished with 22 points and five assists. For the Spartans, who have won three of their previous four games, Malik Hall and Joey Hauser both scored 10 points.
For the Hoosiers, Jalen Hood-Schifino scored 16 points, while Trey Galloway added 11 points.
Indiana: The Hoosiers may need to put in some extra effort if they want to make the NCAA Tournament after losing two of their last three games.
Michigan State: Izzo’s squad got a much-needed victory after falling apart late at Michigan and returning to play at home on an emotional campus.»Michigan state defeats Hoosiers in first home game after the campus shooting«