Harris leads No. 3 Michigan State over Indiana 71-66
Yogi Ferrell scored 14 of his 19 points in the second half, giving the Indiana a shot to beat a third-ranked team for the second time in eight days.
Ferrell and the young Hoosiers, though, came up short.
Gary Harris had 20 of his 24 points after halftime to help No. 3 Michigan State beat Indiana 71-66 on Tuesday night to remain unbeaten in the Big Ten.
The Hoosiers (12-7, 2-4) have lost two straight and four of six. After beating then-No. 3 Wisconsin at home last week, they lost at home to Northwestern.
"I'm proud of my team because I think we did a great job the last couple days of establishing even more togetherness and it showed," coach Tom Crean said.
The Spartans (18-1, 7-0) have won 11 straight games, extending their best one-loss start in a season in school history, and their coach wasn't sure they deserved the latest victory.
"Indiana, I thought, outplayed us and we found a way to win," coach Tom Izzo said. "Those young guys played well, played hard."
Michigan State went on a 10-2 run to take a 62-52 lead with 4:29 left, but led by just four points after Ferrell made a 3-pointer with 36 seconds left. Keith Appling made one of two free throws on the ensuing possession and Stanford Robinson's runner pulled the Hoosiers within three points.
Travis Trice made two free throws with 13.7 seconds left to give the Spartans a five-point lead, essentially sealing their 18th win in 19 home games against Indiana.
"We missed some of the same shots we were making earlier in the game," Crean said.
The Spartans were missing perhaps their best player, Adreian Payne, for a fourth straight game with a sprained right foot.
The Hoosiers didn't have a key player, senior forward Will Sheehey, in the starting lineup for the first time this season after he injured an ankle against the Wildcats.
"It will be day by day, depending on how he responds," Crean said.
Austin Etherington started the first game of his career in Sheehey's place, giving the team a second sophomore in a lineup with three freshmen.
"I'm proud of the way we played without Will," Crean said. "Everybody that went into the game impacted the game."
Izzo called Ferrell "one of the best players in the league. He played very well, hit that big 3 late."
Indiana's Noah Vonleh had 13 points and 13 rebounds. He was named Big Ten freshman of the week on Monday for the second straight time and sixth this season, but wasn't in the mood to celebrate the fact that his team was competitive against the Spartans.
"We just made too many mistakes," Vonleh said. "We've just got to keep pushing forward and get some of these games against other teams."
Indiana led 28-27 at halftime on an eighth lead change after seven ties in a sloppy, closely contested first half. Midway through the first half, the teams had combined for more turnovers (10) than field goals (9).
The Spartans started to play a little better in the second half, going on an 11-2 run to take a four-point lead in the middle of the half, but they couldn't sustain success against a young and scrappy team.
Harris, who was recruited to stay in state to play for Indiana, scored a career-high 26 points to lead Michigan State to a 73-56 victory over the Hoosiers last month. He had five steals in both games against Indiana.
"Knowing him as long as we've known him, he is as good as it gets it in the backcourt," Crean said.
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