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November 30, 2011

Appling Has Career Night in Bruising Win Over FSU

EAST LANSING - Keith Appling scored a career-high 24 points and matched a personal best with seven rebounds to help Michigan State beat Florida State 65-49 Wednesday night in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge.

The Spartans (5-2) have won five straight after opening the season with losses to North Carolina on an aircraft carrier in San Diego and against Duke in New York.

The Seminoles (5-3) have lost three straight - to the Spartans, Connecticut and Harvard - since winning their first five games.

Draymond Green scored 16 points on 5-of-14 shooting and grabbed eight rebounds for the Spartans. The senior forward went over the 1,000-point mark for his career. Michigan State's Brandon Wood had 15 points, a season-high 10 rebounds and a season-high five assists.

Bernard James had 13 points and 12 rebounds for the Seminoles and Michael Snaer scored 11.

Florida State looked much more athletic in the opening minutes, but wore down in its fourth game in seven days.

Wood's dunk midway through the second half put the Spartans ahead for good and they built a double-digit lead late in the game.

Fans at the Breslin Center turned their attention to the Big Ten's championship football game by chanting, "Beat Wis-con-sin! Beat Wis-con-sin!" late in the game.

A fired-up crowd was eerily quiet midway through the first quarter after a Michigan State cheerleader, Taylor Young, fell on her face during a performance.

The 20-year-old junior from Twin Lake, Mich., was raised into the air and fell hard onto the court during a timeout. Dr. Jeff Kovan, the basketball team's physician, was among the medical personnel who evaluated the cheerleader. She was slowly strapped to a backboard and her head was immobilized.

The cheerleader smiled and stuck both thumbs up when the crowd cheered after she was lifted onto a stretcher.

"She's OK," Michigan State athletic director Mark Hollis said.


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