LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) -Ryan McMahon’s hot shooting leads UofL to an upset of #9 Michigan State at the KFC Yum! Center.
As you would expect, the first half was very physical with 20 first half foul calls. The Cards got out to a quick 5-0 run, but center, Steven Enoch was whistled for his second foul with 18:37 left in the first half. Akoy Agau entered the game, and gave the Cards energy drawing the second foul on Spartans star, Josh Langford before the 16 minute media timeout. Unfortunately for him, he picked up his third foul with 9:36 to go.
Ryan McMahon came off the bench on fire knocking down his first three three pointers. UofL would drain 5-12 from downtown in the first frame. Christen Cunningham’s driving layup gave UofL its largest lead of the first half of 12 at 27-15. McMahon’s third triple of the half matched that 12 point lead at 32-20. Defensively, the Cards matched the Spartans intensity inside. Michigan State didn’t score their first two point basket until just over five minutes remaining in the half. Cunningham’s layup just before the buzzer stopped a 10-2 Spartan run to give UofL a 38-32 halftime lead.
The second half started with Enoch picking up his third foul just 33 seconds into the frame. Back-to-back three’s by Sutton and Malik Williams put the Cards back up by 10, 46-36. Michigan State cut the UofL lead to 53-52 with 8:49 remaining, but Cunningham scored on a layup and dished to Nwora for a three to put the Cards back ahead 58-52.
Huge moment in the game, while battling for a rebound, MSU starting point guard, Cassius Winston fouled out with 4:01 to play, but after Agau missed the front end of a one and one, Langford gave the Spartans the lead at 62-61. Their first lead since the 15:33 mark of the first half. That lead was short lived as McMahon drained his fourth three pointer of the game to give the Cards the lead at 64-62. Langford tied the game at 64, and the Spartans regained the lead on Foster Loyer’s jumper. After two McMahon free throws tied the game at 66, Agau was whistled for his fifth foul. Nick Ward made 1-2 free throws giving MSU a 67-66 lead. After a missed three by Williams, Cunningham was fouled with 13 seconds left. He made the first, but missed the second. The Spartans came down with the rebound, and Williams was called for third foul sending Kenny Goins to the line for a one and one. He missed the front end, but McMahon’s heave at the buzzer was short sending the game to overtime tied at 67.
After McMahon made 1-2 free throws, Langford struck again with another mid range jumper to put the Spartans ahead 71-70. After the two teams exchanged free throws, Nwora drained a three to give the Cards the lead for good. Ryan McMahon’s career high 24 points leads the Cards to an 82-78 victory.