EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) (WTVO/WQRF) — The Fighting Illini’s spot as the fourth ranked team in the nation might not last for long. That’s what happens when you play in the highly competitive Big Ten this season.
Tuesday night the Illini lost to Michigan State 81-72 snapping the Illini’s seven-game winning streak. It’s their first loss since January 16 when they fell to Ohio State.
Aaron Henry scored 20 points and Joshua Langford had 15 points and a career-high 16 rebounds to lead Michigan State.
The Spartans (12-9, 6-9 Big Ten) played with a sense of urgency from the start, physically going at their opponents at both ends of the court.
“They punched us in the mouth,” said Illinois guard Trent Frazier, who scored 22 points.
Against a suddenly stingy defense, though, Illinois’ star players weren’t as productive as usual.
“For the most part, we fought and scrapped and that’s all you can ask of a team,” Izzo said.
Illinois guard Ayo Dosunmu, coming off his second triple-double in a 94-63 win over Minnesota, had 17 points on 6-of-18 shooting. The dynamic Dosunmu did have nine rebounds and five assists. Illini center Kofi Cockburn scored 13 points on 5-of-11 shooting.
“They mucked the game up and made it ugly,” coach Brad Underwood said.
The Illini’s record is now (16-6, 12-4).