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COLUMBUS, Ohio – The No. 14 Ohio State men’s basketball team fell to No. 8 Michigan State, 86-77, Saturday afternoon at Value City Arena. With the loss, the Buckeyes fall to 12-2, 2-1 in the Big Ten, while the Spartans improve to 13-2, 3-0 in conference play.
Kaleb Wesson led Ohio State with 25 points and eight rebounds while Luther Muhammad scored 12 and C.J. Jackson added 10 points, five rebounds, five assists and four steals. Cassius Winston paced the Spartans with 25 points and five assists while Nick Ward went for 21 points and eight boards.
Michigan State opened the game with an early 16-11 advantage after a Matt McQuaid layup with 12:47 left to play in the half but Jackson answered with a 3-pointer and Kyle Young followed with a layup to tie the game at 16-16 with 11:14 left to play. The Spartans then held a 29-26 lead after a pair of Ward free throws with 4:24 remaining but the Buckeyes closed the half on a 17-7 spurt to take a 43-36 lead into the half.
Ohio State, which turned the ball over just once in the first 20 minutes, was paced offensively by Wesson’s 18 points and seven boards in 16 first-half minutes. Ward went for 14 points and six rebounds in the first half.
After the Buckeyes held a 50-42 lead with 16:47 left to play, the Spartans used a 9-0 run, capped by an Aaron Henry 3-pointer, over the next 2:05 to take a 51-50 advantage. The Buckeyes scored the next four points to hold a three-point lead but Michigan State made another push, this time a 13-5 spurt, to hold a 64-59 lead with 9:00 left. Ohio State battled back and held a 72-71 advantage after a pair of Keyshawn Woods free throws with 4:39 remaining but the Spartans, who shot 76.5 percent from the field in the second half, closed the contest on a 15-5 spurt to hand the Buckeyes their first Big Ten defeat.
Ohio State hits the road to face Rutgers at 7 p.m. Wednesday.