Sports

College Basketball: Purdue’s surge continues

EAST LANSING, Mich. — The Big Ten standings look a lot different than a week ago.

Purdue’s surge and Michigan State’s slump has a lot to do with it.

E’Twaun Moore scored a season-high 25 points and JaJuan Johnson added 19, lifting the sixth-ranked Boilermakers to a 76-64 victory over the 10th-ranked Spartans on Tuesday night.

“It was very big to get them here,” Moore said.

The loss dropped Michigan State into a first-place tie with Illinois, which won at Wisconsin on Tuesday, and Purdue moved into second-place tie with No. 13 Ohio State.

The Boilermakers (20-3, 8-3) have won six straight and the Spartans (19-6, 9-3) have lost three in a row to lose their commanding lead.

Michigan State coach Tom Izzo previously predicted the conference champion would have four or five losses.

“We’re getting closer to that number now — unfortunately,” he said.

Michigan State point guard Kalin Lucas played after missing a game with a sprained right ankle.

“Kalin was unbelievable,” teammate Chris Allen said. “Every time he came down, he tweaked it even more, but he sucked it up.”

Lucas gave Michigan State a three-point lead with 13:16 left in the first half, then Purdue scored twice as much as the Spartans the rest of the first half to take a 47-33 lead.

The Boilermakers made 65 percent of their shots before halftime.

“We didn’t check anybody the first half,” Izzo said. “Not anybody.

“We haven’t checked in three games and I don’t have an answer for us.”

The Spartans have lost three straight for the first time since a four-game skid in 2007.

Michigan State trailed by 18 points early in the second half but pulled within three with 41⁄2 minutes left.

The Boilermakers responded with Moore’s 3-pointer and held off the rally to snap a nine-game skid at the Breslin Center and reach the 20-win mark for the fourth straight season.

“It was a great atmosphere — one of the best in college basketball — and it’s tough to play when you can’t hear yourself think,” Purdue coach Matt Painter said. “This is an unbelievable place, and we’re fortunate to get a victory.”

Allen, who scored 21 points, made a 3-pointer to make it 65-62.

“The crowd got real loud when they cut it to three,” Moore said. “The long one put it back to six and we were OK after that.”Purdue closed the game with an 11-2 run, making the score lopsided, as it was for much of the night.

“The major surprise to me is a lack of effort right now,” Izzo said. “When we’re jogging back on defense and they’re going in for layups and dunks, that is effort-related and that’s unacceptable.”

The Spartans’ 12-point loss at home was their biggest since Illinois beat them 81-68 four years ago, and snapped their 18-game winning streak at the Breslin Center since losing to Penn State more than a year ago.

The Boilermakers, coming off their first win at Indiana in more than a decade, won at Michigan State for the first time since 1998.

“It’s great for our seniors because there’s only one place (Ohio State) where they haven’t won,” Painter said. “You usually have to be 10 to 15 points better than your opponent on the road, and that’s pretty impressive to do that here.”

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No. 3 Kentucky 66, Alabama 55

LEXINGTON, Ky. — John Wall had 22 points and 10 rebounds for his first double-double, and fellow freshman DeMarcus Cousins got his seventh in a row for Kentucky.

With 16 points and 13 rebounds, Cousins extended his school freshman record with 15 double-doubles. The last Kentucky player to get seven in a row was Jim Andrews, who had a team-record 10 straight in 1973.

With the victory, Kentucky (23-1, 8-1) remained in first place in the Southeastern Conference East Division.

No. 7 Georgetown 79, Providence 70

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Chris Wright scored 21 points, and Greg Monroe had 12 points and 12 assists to lead Georgetown (18-5, 8-5 Big East) erased an eight-point deficit.

Jamine Peterson scored 23 points and Bilal Dixon had 16 rebounds for Providence (12-12, 4-8).

Illinois 63, No. 11 Wisconsin 56

MADISON, Wis. — Demetri McCamey scored 27 points, and Mike Tisdale added 19 on 8-of-11 shooting as Illinois snapped Wisconsin’s 51-0 home record against unranked Big Ten opponents under coach Bo Ryan.

The Illini (17-8, 9-3) became the first team to beat Ryan three times at the Kohl Center.

Wisconsin (18-6, 8-4) got 15 points from Jason Bohannon.

No. 22 Vanderbilt 90, No. 12 Tennessee 71

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Jeffery Taylor scored 16 of his career-high 26 points in the first half, and Vanderbilt swept the season series against its instate rival.

The Commodores (18-5, 7-2) grabbed sole possession of second place in the SEC’s Eastern Division, one loss behind No. 3 Kentucky.

J.P. Prince had 19 points and Wayne Chism added 16 for Tennessee (18-5, 6-3).

WOMEN’S TOP 25

No. 4 Notre Dame 66, Cincinnati 50

CINCINNATI — Lindsay Schrader scored 14 of her 16 points in the second half when Notre Dame (22-1, 9-1 Big East) built a 20-point lead with its full-court pressure.

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