MSU Women dominate in 85-63 win over Rutgers, celebrate Title IX and Spartan WBB Alumni

11 different Spartans scored
Published: Jan. 23, 2023 at 12:21 AM EST
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EAST LANSING, Mich. (MSU Athletics) - With alumni and Title IX trailblazers in the stands, the Michigan State women’s basketball team celebrated pioneers with a wire-to-wire win over Rutgers, 85-63, Sunday afternoon at the Breslin Center.

The Spartans celebrated both Alumni Day and Title IX throughout the game. Michigan State honored all women athletes who set the path for current Spartans, as well as honoring women’s basketball alumni during half time.

Michigan State snapped its four-game losing streak with the win, improving to 11-9 overall and 3-6 in league play. Rutgers fell to 8-13 overall and 2-7 in league contests.

The Spartans got contributions for nearly everyone who played with 11 for the 15 players that saw action scoring at least on three points. Michigan State had four players in double figures led by senior forward Taiyier Parks who scored 14 points with seven rebounds off the bench.

Senior guard Moira Joiner, freshman guard Abbey Kimball and sophomore guard/forward Matilda Ekh all added 13 points.

Sophomore guard DeeDee Hagemann tied her season high with eight assists.

Rutgers was led by a game-high 27 points from Kaylene Smikle.

Michigan State scored the first nine points of the game highlighted by a Joiner trey. A Tory Ozment layup with under four minutes remaining in the period gave MSU its first double-digit lead 15-5. Michigan State ended the period on an 8-0 run to take a commanding 27-10 lead.

Eight different Spartans scored in the first 10 minutes of the game. In the second quarter, MSU continued to use balanced scoring to maintain its lead. Back-to-back treys by Hagemann and Kimball gave the Spartans their first 20-point advantage, 43-21 with under three minutes left in the half.

MSU continued its offensive push with an 11-0 run. The Scarlet Knights offense continued to struggle, going the final 5:37 without a field goal. Kimball led the Spartans with six points in the second quarter.

Looking to fight its way back into the game, Rutgers scored the first six points of the second half to lead to an early Michigan State timeout. Scarlet Knight eventually used another 6-0 run to cut it to a 52-41 RU deficit with under five minutes left in the stanza. The Spartans responded with a 6-0 run of their own to re-establish it lead, 58-41, leading to a RU timeout.

Despite the Scarlet Knights shooting 63.6 percent in the period, Kimball and Joiner helped MSU take a 19-point lead into the final period.Parks scored half of her 14 points in the fourth quarter, playing over seven minutes. MSU was able to utilize its bench throughout the period with 14 players seeing action.

The Spartans took their biggest lead of 24 points with 1:23 left after a Theryn Hallock free throw.The Spartans will now hit the road for a pair of tough battles. Michigan State will take on No. 21/23 Illinois on Sunday, Jan. 29 at 6 p.m. ET, before facing Nebraska on Thursday, Feb. 2 at 8:30 p.m. ET. Both games will be televised on the Big Ten Network.

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