Nov. 3, 2007
East Lansing, Michigan - Grand Valley State sent shock waves through the college basketball world Friday night in East Lansing, Michigan as the Lakers claimed an 85-82 double-overtime exhibition victory over #8 Michigan State before a sellout crowd of 14,759 at the Breslin Center. Grand Valley State will open the regular season portion of its schedule Thursday, Nov. 8 versus Columbus State in the Disney Classic in Orlando, Florida.
Callistus Eziukwu hit a pair of free throws with 3:40 left in the second overtime to give Grand Valley State the lead for good (79-77), followed by a jumper in the paint to put the Lakers up 81-77 with 1:49 left. MSU cut the lead to three with a free throw, but true freshman Alvin Storrs hit a running layup with 1:24 left to give GVSU a 83-78 lead with 1:24 left. MSU cut the lead to three with two free throws by Kalin Lucas, then Chris Allen hit two more free throws to cut the GVSU lead to one (83-82) with 44 seconds left. GVSU ran the clock down and Storrs drove to the paint and dished to Eziukwu for a layup with 10 seconds left for an 85-82 GVSU lead. Neitzel missed an off balance three-pointer with Eziukwu and L.J. Kilgore in his face as time expired.
"I'm excited for our program, but our most important game will be next Thursday (Nov. 8) in Florida versus Columbus State," said GVSU head coach Ric Wesley. "With that being said, this is a nice win because I have so much respect for Tom (Izzo) and Michigan State. I thought we played smart basketball and did some nice things, but I'm most impressed with our competitive nature."
The Lakers built their largest lead of the game (31-23) at the 5:42 mark of the first half when Pete Trammell hit a three-pointer. The Lakers led 40-36 after 20 minutes of action. Michigan State took its first lead of the game on a pair of Goran Suton free throws at the 11:52 mark of the second half and a jumper by Suton gave the Spartans a 51-48 lead. However, senior center Callistus Eziukwu hit a jumper from the paint and Trammell hit jumper from the left wing to give GVSU a 52-51 lead with 9:26 left in the game. Senior guard Jason Jamerson hit a three-pointer to give GVSU a 59-55 lead with 5:57 left in regulation. Suton gave the Spartans their second lead of the game (63-62) with two free throws at the 58 second mark. Eziukwu missed a jumper from the paint and Michigan State looked to seal the game with free throws in the closing seconds, but freshman forward Justin Ringler stole and inbounds pass and drove the length of the floor for a layup and foul to put GVSU up 64-63. Ringler made the free throw to give the Lakers a 65-63 lead with 13 ticks left. Senior guard L.J. Kilgore appeared to steal the game away in regulation when he tipped the ball away from MSU All-American guard Drew Neitzel, but Kilgore was called for a fould and Neitzel hit to free throws to send the game into overtime.
Ringler gave GVSU an early lead in the first overtime with a jumper and the teams traded buckets until Neitzel hit a three-pointer to give Michigan State 75-71 with 1:06 remaining. The Lakers battled back and Eziukwu hit a pair of free throws to pull GVSU within two (75-73) and a Laker defensive stand put the ball in senior guard Jason Jamerson's hands with 30 seconds left. Jamerson drove the baseline and converted a reverse layup to tie the game at 75-75. Freshman Kalin Lucas missed a three-pointer at the buzzer to send the game into a second overtime.
Grand Valley State held Michigan State to just 37.1 percent shooting from the floor, while the Lakers hit 41.8 percent. Senior guard Jason Jamerson led GVSU with 19 points, while freshman forward Justin Ringler chipped in 16 points and seven rebounds. Callistus Eziukwu added 15 points and seven caroms, Pete Trammell tallied 12 points and eight rebounds, Nick Freer added 12 points and three rebounds. L.J. Kilgore dished out seven assists, while Eziukwu notched four blocked shots. GVSU held a 44-41 rebounding advantage.
Freshman Chris Allen led Michigan State with 15 points, while Neitzel added 12 points.