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Morgan lifts Michigan State to ninth win in row

Dec 30, 2007 - 2:33 AM EAST LANSING, Michigan (Ticker) -- Michigan State knows how to close out a year.

Raymar Morgan scored 24 points to lead five players in double figures as the seventh-ranked Spartans rolled to a 93-75 victory over Wisconsin-Green Bay on Saturday.

Freshman Kalin Lucas added 17 points and Drew Neitzel had 16 as Michigan State (12-1) extended its winning streak to nine games and completed its third consecutive perfect month of December.

A sizzling shooting performance by the Spartans sent the Phoenix (7-5) to their third straight loss. Michigan State was 37-of-67 (55 percent) in improving to 6-0 all-time against Wisconsin-Green Bay, which never has beaten a top-10 team.

"One of the more impressive offensive performances in my career; one of the more disgusting defensive performances in my career," Spartans coach Tom Izzo said.

The Spartans took control early behind Morgan, who scored nine points to help Michigan State assume an 18-9 lead before Lucas came off the bench to provide a huge spark.

With the Spartans leading, 22-18, Lucas hit a pair of 3-pointers to help extend the advantage to 32-20 midway through the opening half.

After Wisconsin-Green Bay whittled the lead back to eight points, Lucas and Neitzel hit back-to-back shots from the arc in a 10-0 run that ballooned the margin to 48-30.

Lucas capped an outstanding first half by hitting his fourth 3-pointer to give Michigan State a 53-36 lead at the break.

"You have to give Green Bay a lot of credit," Izzo said. "We went on a run right before the half and had them down big and after they shot the ball so well early because we guarded nobody. They could have died but they came out and played us even in the second half."

The 6-foot guard had 14 points in the opening 20 minutes, following up a season-high 18-point effort in last Saturday's 78-72 win over then-No. 4 Texas.

"I think everybody was just looking for each other," Lucas said. "Travis (Walton) had 11 assists today. I was real proud of him today. Everybody's trying to get better."

Mike Schachtner had 20 points and Ryan Tillema 17 for the Phoenix, who lost their third game to a Big Ten Conference opponent this season.

"I felt we did a very good job offensively tonight," Wisconsin-Green Bay coach Todd Kowalczyk said. "But when you let a team shoot 55 percent, and a lot of those were layups in transition, that's the part we have to work on and come back and do a better job."

    --- --- -----
    WISC GREEN BAY 36 39 75
    MICHIGAN ST (7) 53 40 93 FINAL

    Dec 29 6:01 PM


    Dec 29 4:52 PM