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Turnovers, missed free throws doom Michigan State in loss to Louisville

Posted at 11:18 PM, Nov 27, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-28 11:00:47-05

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Ryan McMahon made two free throws with 7.1 seconds remaining in overtime before Jordan Nwora made another from the line with 3.1 seconds left to seal it as Louisville upset No. 9 Michigan State 82-78 on Tuesday night in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

McMahon scored all seven of his points in the extra session from the line to finish with a career-high 24. Nwora's clinching free throw followed his 3-pointer with 2:05 left that gave the Cardinals (4-2) the lead for good in an exciting matchup that ended a two-game slide and gave first-year coach Chris Mack his first significant win with the program.

Louisville needed just about every point to hold off the Spartans (5-2), who had a chance to get close with Joshua Langford (15 points) at the line. But he missed the first of two free throws with 4.2 seconds left and failed to hit the rim on an intentional miss, a violation that gave Louisville the ball and led to Nwora's free throw.

Dwayne Sutton and Christen Cunningham each had 13 points for the Cardinals, who won despite shooting 40 percent and getting outrebounded 47-30.

Kyle Ahrens had 15 points for Michigan State while starting in place of injured senior guard Matt McQuaid, who did not travel for the game because of a thigh bruise.


Michigan State could fall out of the Top 10 after losing to an unranked team.


Michigan State: The Spartans fought hard despite missing shots and committing turnovers in the first half. Langford provided a big lift down the stretch in regulation and overtime but missed a free throw that could have given the Spartans a chance.

Louisville: The Cardinals led much of the game before wobbling down the stretch. But they regrouped in OT, dictated the pace and made free throws, most importantly.


Michigan State opens Big Ten play Friday at Rutgers before hosting Iowa in another league game on Monday.

Louisville visits Seton Hall on Saturday in a matchup of former Big East Conference foes.