On a day that many other top seeds found themselves in difficult situations, top-seeded Michigan State gradually pulled away and never was threatened. Senior forward Draymond Green scored 24 points, grabbed 12 rebounds and had 10 assists as the Spartans beat Long Island, 89-67, in a West Region round-of-64 game in Columbus, Ohio, on Friday night.
Michigan State (28-7) advanced to Sunday’s round of 32 against ninth-seeded St. Louis.
A top seed has never lost to a No. 16 seed and the Spartans made sure they were not the first. After leading by 10 points at halftime, they slowly put things away in the second half as Green — the Big Ten’s player of the year — took control.
Center Derrick Nix added 18 points and center Adreian Payne had 16 points and seven rebounds as the Spartans took advantage of their size. In all, the Spartans shot 58.8 percent from the field and outrebounded the Blackbirds, 42-19.
Long Island was led by the former Springbrook High tandem of forward Jamal Olasewere and guard C.J. Garner, who scored 17 and 15 points, respectively. Julian Boyd also had 15 points for the Blackbirds (25-9).
March Madness: Interactive bracket & tourney history