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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Michigan State's Taylor thwarts Iowa in finale

Tuesday, March 5, 2002

EAST LANSING, Mich. - With its conference title hopes long since vanished, Iowa had hoped to at least get on a bit of a roll going into the Big Ten tournament.

Because of Marcus Taylor, the Hawkeyes couldn't even do that and a disappointing regular season ended with another loss.

Taylor, Michigan State's superb sophomore point guard, was more than Iowa could handle. He scored 34 points, handed out nine assists and single-handedly blunted an Iowa rally in Michigan State's 93-79 victory on Saturday.

"He no longer looks like a sophomore guard anymore," Iowa coach Steve Alford said. "He looks like a veteran, senior-type of guard."

Taylor certainly was too much for Iowa's three point guards, freshman Pierre Pierce, sophomore Brody Boyd and junior Chauncey Leslie. Their combined totals of 22 points and five assists weren't bad, but they paled beside Taylor's numbers.

Iowa tied for eighth in the league after being expected to contend for the conference title. The Hawkeyes will play Purdue in the first round of the conference tournament at 1 p.m. Thursday in Indianapolis.

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