Adreian Payne scored 18 points as the Spartans downed the Badgers to advance to the Big Ten championship game in Indianapolis for the second time in three years. Branden Dawson posted 14 points and seven rebounds while Denzel Valentine contributed 12 points and seven boards for third-seeded Michigan State (25-8), which placed all five starters in double figures and will square off against top-seeded Michigan on Sunday. Gary Harris chipped in with 12 points while Keith Appling had 10 points and six assists as the Spartans shot 56.9 percent to post consecutive victories for the first time since an 11-game winning streak from Dec. 14-Jan. 21. Frank Kaminsky led the way with 28 points for No. 3 seed Wisconsin (26-7), which fell short of making the title game in back-to-back years for the first time in school history. Sam Dekker and Ben Brust finished with 11 points apiece while Traevon Jackson added 10 for the Badgers. Michigan State, which shot 65.4 percent in the first half while holding Wisconsin to 28 percent, never trailed and seized control of the game with a 16-1 burst to establish a 37-16 advantage. The Badgers ended a seven-minute field-goal drought on Brust’s 3-pointer and answered with the next seven points, but still trailed 43-26 at intermission – their largest halftime deficit of the season. Kaminsky, who scored 12 first-half points, continued to carry the offense with eight of his team’s first 13 points after the break as Wisconsin closed within 70-63 with just under six minutes remaining after a three-point play by Josh Gasser. The Badgers could get no closer than six, however, as the Spartans sank eight free throws over the final two minutes. GAME NOTEBOOK: Sunday’s title game will mark the first time Michigan and Michigan State will meet in a tournament of any kind. … The Spartans improved to 11-0 when Dawson scores in double figures. … Michigan State has won nine of its last 12 meetings with Wisconsin, although the Badgers are the only Big Ten team with a winning record against Spartans coach Tom Izzo since Bo Ryan took over in 2001-02 (14-12).
Michigan St 83, Wisconsin 75
ProSportsDaily | Mar 16