Michigan State basketball never stopped fighting, not even after a ten-point loss to Purdue, which likely erased any chance of making the NCAA Tournament.
Nothing went right for the Spartans early on. They turned the ball over nine times in less than ten minutes, and it felt like the beginning of a long afternoon.
It would have been easy to give up; Michigan State isn't in contention for a regular-season title, nor is a Final Four or National Championship on the horizon.
"I'm just proud nobody gave in," MSU coach Tom Izzo told reporters in a videoconference. "I think a lot of people out there … were questioning whether they were quitting on anybody, and that's never going to happen here."
The Spartans put together one of the best performances of the season, earning a rare road victory against Indiana inside Assembly Hall.
MSU fought back from a double-digit deficit, going on a 22-6 run and defeating IU 78-71 on Saturday.
Aaron Henry took control when Michigan State needed him the most, tying his career-high 27 points while grabbing five rebounds and dishing out two assists.
Joshua Langford turned in an efficient outing, Gabe Brown started knocking down shots, and Rocket Watts had his best showing in weeks.
"We have to learn to take these games for ourselves. Nobody is going to give us anything; it's the Big Ten," said Henry. "Excuse my french; we had to learn to strap our nuts on and really play ... we played well. We did the right things."
Most importantly, a team whose season is on the verge of being over didn't hang their heads or kick themselves due to self-induced errors.
"We kept grinding it; we kept working at," Izzo said. "I told you … they didn't quit."
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