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Michigan State pulls away from Illinois in second half

9:34 PM, Jan 31, 2013   |    comments
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East Lansing, MI (Sports Network) - Keith Appling scored a game-high 24 points, grabbed eight rebounds and dished out seven assists, as 13th-ranked Michigan State utilized a big second half to take down Illinois, 80-75 in a Big Ten Conference showdown Thursday at Breslin Center.

Gary Harris and Denzel Valentine each netted 14 points for the Spartans (18-4, 7-2 Big Ten), who trailed by 10 points at halftime, but outscored the Illini 53-38 in the second half en route to bouncing back from a loss Sunday at Indiana.

Tracy Abrams scored 16 points and dished out six helpers and D.J. Richardson added 14 points for the Fighting Illini (15-7, 2-6), who have lost five of six.

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