Brown, Christie lead Spartans past Butler

(AP photo) Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo watches from the bench as his team plays against Maryland in the Big Ten Conference tournament in Indianapolis on March 11.

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Gabe Brown scored 19 points, freshman Max Christie added 18 and Michigan State beat Butler 73-52 on Wednesday night in the Gavitt Tipoff.

Michigan State jumped out to a 22-8 lead behind nine points from Christie. A 10-0 run, opened and closed by Christie, early in the second half made it 44-28 and the Spartans led by double figures the rest of the way.

Marcus Bingham Jr. chipped in with 10 points and six blocks for Michigan State (2-1). Bingham and Brown each grabbed a team-high six rebounds as the Spartans outrebounded Butler 41-25.

It was the first time Michigan State’s Tom Izzo ever coached at Hinkle Fieldhouse.

Ty Groce had 15 points and eight rebounds, and Chuck Harris added 13 points for Butler (3-1). Groce and Harris combined to shoot 8 for 29 and the Bulldogs finished at 29.1% from the field.

Butler and Michigan State last met in the 2010 Final Four when Gordon Hayward led the Bulldogs to a 52-50 victory with 19 points and nine rebounds.


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