Michigan State’s 61-56 loss Sunday to Kansas was one of those early-season learning experiences that'll get referenced in March. .
Despite missing Javon Bess and Alvin Ellis due to injury, the Spartans found a way to hang around the Jayhawks, who had ample opportunity to blow the game open after gaining five- and seven-point leads in the second half.
As he’s done throughout the young season, Travis Trice led Michigan State when it mattered most. The senior point guard finished with 14 points, four rebounds, two assists and a pair of steals. Denzel Valentine—the “senior” junior—checked in with 14 points, seven rebounds and a steal.
Together, Valentine and Trice hold they keys to the offense. And with an injection from Branden Dawson, a senior forward/wing, the Spartans should go far in 2014-15. Dawson’s been sick during the past week, which sort of gives him a pass for recent up-and-down play.
But as Dick Vitale said during ESPN’s broadcast of the Orlando Classic championship, Dawson didn’t appear to be bothered by the flu, under the weather or otherwise hindered in any shape, form or fashion.
Basically, he looked pretty good.
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