Jan. 13, 2013; East Lansing, MI, USA; Michigan State Spartans guard Branden Dawson (22) pushes the ball up the court against the Nebraska Cornhuskers during 2nd half at Jack Breslin Students Events Center. Mandatory Credit: Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan State Basketball Wins At Penn State Amid Controversy

Michigan State basketball took on Penn State this evening. But, that wasn’t even the biggest story of the day. Even with all the distractions, the Spartans were able to get a crucial Big Ten away win.

Earlier today, a report came out saying Adreian Payne and Branden Dawson had been involved in a fight at the team hotel. As it was verified later, Tom Izzo reported both players wouldn’t start the game or play in the first half. This led Alex Gauna to be thrust into a starting role and allowed Matt Costello to get some minutes.

The game was close for stretches, but in the end the Spartans were just too strong for the Nittany Lions. Both Dawson and Payne entered the game, in the second half. Both played extremely well. Payne had 13 points in a 6-minute stretch. And Dawson provided his usual energy on defense and the boards. Derrick Nix was perfect from the field. This made up for Keith Appling’s bad shooting night. The Nittany Lions were able to keep it close with strong play from Jermaine Marshall and D.J. Newbill, whom had 29 and 27 points respectively.

The Spartans got a key win as they head into games against Ohio State, Wisconsin, Indiana, Illinois, and Minnesota. A grueling stretch, where the Spartans must be on top of their game to get results. Hopefully the Spartans are up to the task, and emerge from this tough stretch with some victories.

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