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      Tuesday
      31 / 16
      Wednesday
      23 / 11
      Thursday
      22 / 12

      Spartans make easy work of Wildcats

      Adreian Payne had 20 points and 14 rebounds, and No. 9 Michigan State cruised past Northwestern 85-70 on Thursday night to stay tied atop the Big Ten. The Spartans (21-4, 10-2) are even in the standings with rival Michigan - and those two teams meet in Ann Arbor on Feb. 23. Gary Harris added 14 points for Michigan State, rebounding a bit from a poor shooting performance in a loss to Wisconsin last weekend. The Spartans shot 53 percent from the field against a Northwestern team that came in with a sterling defensive reputation. The Wildcats (12-13, 5-7) had not allowed 80 points in a game in over a month. Michigan State was without point guard Keith Appling, who has been bothered by a wrist injury.

      -Noah Trister (AP Sports Writer)

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