EAST LANSING, Mich. (Michigan News Source) – With a 24-7 lead at the half, Michigan State was in control of the game. Indiana had other plans in the second half scoring 17 points in the third quarter forcing overtime to pull off the 39-31 win. MSU is now 5-7 on the year and needs to win next weekend to become bowl eligible.
Head Coach Mel Tucker said after the game, “Obviously very disappointed not being able to close this game out. We got outplayed in the second half. We had the opportunity to win the game and weren’t able to get it done, so, very, very disappointed, especially for our senior’s last game in the Woodshed.”
It looked as though MSU was going to win the game on the last possession of the game. Taking over with 5:36 left in the game on their own 25-yard line, the Spartans had 75 yards to go to score. Payton Thorne started the drive with a 22-yard pass to Keon Coleman. Three plays later, Daniel Barker caught a 16-yard pass to get into Indiana territory at the 38-yard line. Elijah Collins, five plays later, recorded an 11-yard run to the 10-yard line as Indiana took a timeout with 1:01 left in the game.
Two straight runs put MSU on the three-yard line for a third-and-three. Indiana stopped the run for a two-yard loss to set up a 22-yard field goal by Ben Patton. Patton’s kick was no good as the game went into overtime tied at 31.
MSU took the ball first in overtime as Collins rushed 16-yards to the nine-yard line. A penalty put it at first-and-15 from the 15-yard line. A four-yard completion and then an incomplete pass brought up third-and-11. MSU opted to go for a 28-yard field and Patton’s attempt was blocked as Indiana took over.
Indiana brought the same scenario driving to the seven-yard line but was stopped for a fourth-and-five. They came on for the winning field goal, but MSU’s Michael Fletcher blocked the attempt as they went into the second overtime.
On the very first play of the second overtime, Indiana went for a 24-yard completion to the one-yard line. Shaun Shivers then punched in a one-yard run for the six-point lead. They converted the two-point conversion for the 39-31 lead.
The Spartans completed a third-and-one at the 16-yard line to stay alive. Thorne then had two incomplete passes for third-and-10 from the 13-yard line. A three-yard pass was all he could get setting up a fourth-and-seven. Thorne tried to go to the middle of the field but was denied as Indiana won their fifth game of the season.
Thorne finished the game throwing for 298 yards and two touchdowns going 27-of-42. Coleman had a 100-yard receiving game with 107 yards on eight catches and one touchdown. Both Jalen Burger and Collins had over 100 yards rushing. Berger recorded 119 yards and Collins came away with 107 yards and two touchdowns.
Indiana took the early lead in the game, 7-0, on a 34-yard run just two minutes into the game. MSU’s Patton kicked a 19-yard field goal for the first points of the day, 7-3. MSU then scored the next 21-points for 24-7 lead. Maliq Carr gave MSU the lead, 10-7 with a five-yard reception at 11:50. Five minutes later, Collins rushed in from one-yard for a 17-7 lead. Then, just before the half, Coleman received a two-yard pass making it 24-7 headed into the half.
Indiana scored early in the third quarter to pull within 10, 24-14, but Collins had a 31-yard run with 6:17 left for a 31-14 lead. Indiana then scored 17-straight points to tie the game at 31. It started on an 88-yard kickoff return right after MSU took the 31-14 lead. A 40-yard field goal with 4:14 to go in the third made it 31-24. The game was then tied at 31 with 12:59 left in the game on a one-yard run. MSU’s chance to win it was stopped when the field goal was missed at the end of regulation.
MSU ends the regular season at Penn State next Saturday in University Park, Penn., trying to become bowl eligible.