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4:00 PM PT5:00 PM MT6:00 PM CT7:00 PM ET12:00 PM GMT8:00 PM 北京时间5:00 PM MST7:00 PM EST, Dec 21, 2018
Jack Breslin Student Events Center, East Lansing, Michigan  Attendance: 14,797

Michigan State faces in-state rival Oakland University

Michigan State didn't finish its last game to the satisfaction of head coach Tom Izzo.

His reaction?

"We get four days to practice with no rules, no anything. We are going to practice, we will do the opposite of my fellow Hall of Famer, Allen Iverson," he said. "We are going to practice, we are going to practice and we are going to practice. We are going to get better because this team has a chance to get better."

The No. 10 Spartans (9-2) are already quite good. They have won nine of their last 10, including a 104-83 home win over Green Bay on Sunday. They face in-state rival Oakland University on Friday.

Junior center Nick Ward scored a career-high 28 points against Green Bay, including 22 in the first half, as the Spartans grabbed a 29-point halftime lead. The Phoenix outscored them 48-40 in the second half.

"I guess what it says is that we're constantly learning about them and we're constantly trying to show them that you have to play the game, not the team or score," Izzo said. "You have to play the game on a consistent level, night in and night out. (Sunday) we played the game half way. We're going to shoot for a full game next game and hopefully, we'll fall closer."

Scoring hasn't been an issue for Michigan State in most of its games. The Spartans reached the 100-point mark for the third time this season. They shot 50.7 percent from the field on Sunday, nudging their season average to 49.3 percent. Ward and guards Joshua Langford and Cassius Winston are all averaging at least 16 points per game.

Michigan State has never lost to the Golden Grizzlies in 16 meetings, though Oakland has occasionally provided some stiff opposition. The Grizzlies took them to overtime in 2015, when the Spartans were ranked No. 1. Last season, Oakland led with 12 minutes to play before the Spartans pulled away to an 86-73 win.

The Grizzlies (4-8) have lost five of their last six, though they gave Georgia a scare on Tuesday. Oakland trailed by two points in the late going but the Bulldogs finished with a 15-5 run to claim an 81-69 victory.

The Grizzlies were down by 17 in the first half and coach Greg Kampe was pleased how his team hung around.

"We got back in the game because of how hard we played," he said.

A quick 3-point attempt and a turnover thwarted their comeback.

"I just don't think we're ready to win this game," he said. "We've got to get ready to win it and playing in games like this will get us ready. We were there to win it and we made two really bad plays. We've got to have the mental toughness to make the (right) play."

Oakland will be playing the sixth of eight consecutive road games. Their next home game comes Jan. 3 against Northern Kentucky.

Junior forward Xavier Hill-Mais (22.8 ppg, 6.4 rpg) is the team's top player. Despite their record, the Grizzlies have shot 41.9 percent from 3-point range.

Updated December 20, 2018

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