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Three Takeaways: No. 22 Michigan State handles Toledo

Michigan State stayed unbeaten in the Breslin Center after a win over Toledo

Michigan State surged to a big first half lead, and held on despite a strong second half run by Toledo to win, 81-66, on Saturday.

The Spartans played a near-perfect first half, shooting 53 percent from three-point range and only turning the ball over four times. Michigan State spread the offense around, with eight different Spartans scoring in the opening frame.

MSU led 43-23 at halftime.

But Toledo didn't go away quietly into the night. The Rockets found their offense and closed to within 64-55 with six minutes left to play, making the fans in attendance within the Breslin Center sweat a bit.

The Spartans responded to Toledo's surge with three consecutive scoring possessions however, and took the last life out of the Rockets.

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1. Fewer turnovers for Sparty

Tom Izzo and every fan of this program has been frustrated by the turnover problems the Spartans have had this season. Michigan State entered tonight averaging 16.1 turnovers per game, but the Spartans limited the giveaways to just 12 against Toledo, with one of those coming very late with the game already in hand. The Rockets don't have the length of the better opponents Michigan State has faced this season, or will face as Big Ten play gets under way -- that's fair to note -- but this was a step in the right direction for the Spartans.

2. Five double-digit scorers

Michigan State has been searching for more consistency and balance at the offensive end. The Spartans got that balance today, with five players reaching double-figure scoring: Max Christie (14), Gabe Brown (12), Tyson Walker (11), Marcus Bingham Jr. (10) and AJ Hoggard (10). Freshman Jaden Akins added 9 points, going 3-for-3 from three-point range. Michigan State didn't shoot the ball particularly well from the field, just 40 percent (26-for-65), but stretched the floor with good three-point shooting (46 percent), while gobbling up 12 offensive rebounds. All-in-all, a decent effort from the Spartans on that end of the floor.

3. Lockdown defense at work again

Michigan State may be the best defensive team of the young season thus far. The Spartans handled their business on the defensive end again today, limiting Toledo to 35.4 percent shooting overall, and 16.7 percent from long-distance. Michigan State had 10 blocks tonight -- they entered the game averaging six per game -- and had six steals as well. The Rockets were limited to .907 points per possession. Another strong defensive performance by the Spartans.