Nick Ward scored 23 points on 10-for-12 shooting as No. 11 Michigan State used a 30-0 run to overwhelm visiting Tennessee Tech 101-33 in a preliminary-round game of the Las Vegas Invitational on Sunday in East Lansing, Mich.
The Spartans (3-1) will face No. 20 UCLA on Thanksgiving night in Las Vegas, then play either No. 7 North Carolina or Texas on Friday.
Cassius Winston added 19 points and six assists, and fellow guard Joshua Langford had 16 points and five assists for the Spartans, who have won three in a row following a season-opening loss to then-No. 1 Kansas.
Micaiah Henry and Garrett Golday led Tennessee Tech (0-5) with six points apiece. The Golden Eagles, whose closest loss this season was by 14 points, were playing their second consecutive ranked opponent after being blown out 108-58 by No. 7 North Carolina on Friday.
Two years ago, the Golden Eagles lost only 71-63 at Michigan State. This one never was close.
Ward, a junior forward, was listed as questionable after spraining his right ankle Wednesday in an 80-59 victory against Louisiana-Monroe.
He showed no ill effects Sunday, scoring the game’s first six points. He had 18 points on 9-for-10 shooting in the first half as the Spartans built a 42-14 advantage.
Michigan State outscored the Golden Eagles 19-0 over the final 7-plus minutes of the first half — when Tennessee Tech missed eight straight shots and committed three turnovers — and opened the second half with a 9-0 run.
The Spartans shot 37 of 67 from the field (55.2 percent) and 14 of 33 from 3-point range. The Golden Eagles were 15 of 51 (29.4 percent) and just 1 of 10 on 3-pointers.
Michigan State had the advantage in nearly every statistical category, outrebounding the Golden Eagles 47-27 and forcing 19 turnovers.
The Spartans had a 34-4 edge in fast-break points, 42-24 on points in the paint, and their bench outscored Tennessee Tech’s 35-15.
—Field Level Media