Mar 22, 2014; Spokane, WA, USA; Michigan State Spartans guard Denzel Valentine (45) celebrates against the Harvard Crimson in the second half of a men

March Madness 2014: Michigan State holds off pesky Harvard team to advance to Sweet 16

If there is one thing that Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo has always stressed, it’s teamwork, and that’s exactly what we saw from his team on Saturday as they were able to hold off a great effort from a pesky Harvard team, 80-73, to advance to yet another Sweet 16.

In their win on Thursday, the Spartans got a career-best effort from Adreian Payne, however that was not there this evening. But, in the absence of that, it was guard Brandon Dawson who stepped up and turned in the performance of his career.

On the night, Dawson finished with 26 points and added in nine rebounds. Gary Harris also contributed in a huge way, dropping in 18 points and adding in five assists.

Michigan State controlled everything for the majority of the game, holding a lead as big as 52-39 with 15 minutes to go in the second half. But after that, the Crimson started firing back, eventually taking the lead at 62-60 with just over seven minutes to go.

In the end though, it was the Big Ten champions that were able to salvage this one and walk away with the win and the Sweet 16 berth.

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Tags: March Madness 2014 Michigan State Spartans