Gary Harris answered the call again for number 12 Michigan State last night in their win over number 18 Minnesota. In a game that was a typical Big 10 defensive battle, Harris and the Spartans had to overcome injuries in order to gut out a tough game in order to stay in the top three of their conference. The Spartans are discovering the level of toughness that Tom Izzo is always preaching to his teams in order for them to achieve their expectations.
Harris, a freshman, led all scorers with 15 points while playing through a back ailment and Keith Appling added 14 points before leaving with a shoulder injury with 1:17 left, holding his right shoulder after getting tied up with Joe Coleman. He returned to the bench in the final minute but couldn’t play because of his shoulder injury.
Already fighting through injuries to three other players on their roster the Spartans had a gut check when their best player, Appling, went down. Harris was there to pick up the slack, scoring his points efficiently on 5 of 11 from the field including 4 of 8 from three point land and led the team with 4 assists. For a team struggling to score against a tough Gopher’s defense, these numbers were vital to getting a win.