Jankoska sets two MSU scoring marks
EAST LANSING — Tori Jankoska knew she would likely become Michigan State’s all-time leading scorer. She didn’t see another mark coming.
Jankoska scored 42 points, breaking the Spartans’ single-game and all-time scoring records in a 94-75 victory over No. 11 Ohio State on Tuesday night.
The 5-foot-8 senior guard started the night six points away from Aerial Powers’ scoring record of 1,817 and needed just a few minutes to surpass her with two 3-pointers and a layup. She scored her final point on a free throw with 3:34 left, breaking Maxann Reese’s mark of 41 points on Jan. 29, 1999, against Iowa.
“I felt like I should’ve bought a ticket to the game,” MSU head coach Suzy Merchant said. “It was a special moment for sure.”
Jankoska was aware of Reese’s record because Powers scored 40 last year against Minnesota, falling a point short, and noticed she had a shot to surpass it.
“Once you get close, you look up a few times and see it and it gets exciting,” Jankoska said. “But the most important thing is that we got the win.”
She was given a rousing ovation when she was taken out of the game with 1:06 left and 1,853 points.
Jankoska was 14 of 25 overall, 8 of 19 on 3-pointers, and 6 for 6 at the line when she wasn’t making seven assists, grabbing six rebounds and snatching two steals.
“She’s a spectacular player,” Ohio State coach Kevin McGuff said. “She’s of the best players in the country and showed it.”
The Spartans (13-4, 3-1 Big Ten) led the Buckeyes (14-5, 4-1) the entire game, going ahead by as much as 20 points.
“It’s a big confidence-booster,” Jankoska said. “If we play like this against all the teams, there’s no telling what’s going to happen. We can really contend for a Big Ten championship.”
Crystal Falls’ Lexi Gussert played 24 minutes for the Spartans, scoring two points with three rebounds and one assist.
Ohio State: The Buckeyes slipped out of first place in the Big Ten — falling behind Maryland (15-1, 3-0) — on a night the conference’s leading scorer struggled. Ohio State’s Kelsey Mitchell missed 14 of 18 shots and was held to 13 points, 10 below her average. “She did have an uncharacteristic performance,” McGuff said.
Michigan State: The Spartans, who are tied for third place with Michigan, will need to find other players to score as teams do all they can to slow down Jankoska. Michigan State doesn’t have another player averaging double figures, but did have Branndais Agee score 16 and Victoria Gaines have 11 points against the Buckeyes
Michigan State: The Spartans play Saturday at Rutgers (11 a.m. BTN).