WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Tom Izzo will see Zach Edey posting up in his nightmares for quite a while.
Purdue’s star big man and national player of the year candidate dominated Michigan State basketball for the second time in less than two weeks Sunday. Edey finished with another career high with 38 points as the top-ranked Boilermakers cruised to a 77-61 victory over the Spartans at Mackey Arena.
The 7-foot-4 center’s previous career high came Jan. 16 in East Lansing, when he finished with 32 points with 17 rebounds and hit the game-winning layup in Purdue’s 64-63 victory. Edey was 13 for 26 in that game, and he went 15 of 24 while grabbing 13 rebounds with three assists in the rematch to lift the Boilermakers to the season sweep.
The Spartans (14-8, 6-5 Big Ten) showed plenty of fight after falling behind by 20 points at the start of the second half, cutting it to 10 points twice before the Boilermakers (21-1, 10-1) went on a 18-9 run that was sparked by six straight points from Edey and finished by him with a pair of layups.
Purdue has taken six straight over MSU at Mackey Arena, with the Spartans’ last victory there Feb. 20, 2014. The Boilermakers have won 10 of the last 14 meetings overall and six of the last seven, including escaping East Lansing with a one-point win less than two weeks ago.
A.J. Hoggard had 20 points and six assists for MSU, which gets an extended break for the first time in 2023 before heading to New York for a rematch with Rutgers on Saturday at Madison Square Garden (noon/Fox). Jaden Akins added 12 points as the only other Spartan in double figures, with Tyson Walker scoring nine on 4 of 11 shooting. Joey Hauser had just three points on 1 of 4 shooting but led MSU with five rebounds as Purdue finished with a 37-26 advantage on the boards.
For 13 minutes, the Spartans countered everything Purdue threw at them. And then Edey took control.
Izzo tried using double-teams against the Canadian center. He mixed his trio of Mady Sissoko, Jaxon Kohler and Carson Cooper. Nothing worked. With MSU down five, Edey went on an 8-0 run by himself over a two-minute stretch with a pair of hook shots over Cooper, a layup over Sissoko and a dunk off a wrap-around pass from Caleb Furst. Edey added a pair of putbacks for 12 points in a 4:37 span as part of the Boilermakers’ 14-2 knockout punch.
Edey was 8 of 12 for 16 points with six rebounds and an assist in the first half.
The Spartans, meanwhile, struggled with turnovers – three of their eight in the half on offensive fouls. Malik Hall, who had a charging call earlier, got called for his second on a screen that tripped Purdue’s Ethan Morton. Izzo railed at the refs to no avail, then went back at them after David Jenkins Jr.’s 3-pointer at the buzzer gave the Boilers a 40-22 lead. Izzo drew a technical foul as the teams were walking back to the locker room, and Braden Smith’s two free throws made it a 20-point Purdue lead before the start of the second half.
Edey scored Purdue’s first seven points of the second half, but the Spartans chipped away at the lead.
Hauser and Hall hit 3-pointers, then Hoggard started attacking the paint off the dribble. Hall’s layup with 11:45 cut MSU’s deficit in half, 53-43. But that was as close as the Spartans could get.
Edey went back to work inside, hitting four three throws sandwiched around a layup. He affected the game in other ways, assisting Morton for a layup and Jenkins for another 3-pointer while the big man was double-teamed. And he finished off MSU with two more layups that pushed Purdue’s cushion back to 19 points with 4:16 remaining.
Hoggard had 13 points, five assists and three rebounds in the second half. That included 7 of 9 at the free-throw line by being more aggressive, drawing the first two fouls Edey committed against MSU this season.
This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Michigan State basketball toppled by Zach Edey, No. 1 Purdue, 77-61