Post image for Walker scores 30 in UConn upset of Michigan State

Walker scores 30 in UConn upset of Michigan State

by Jorge Hernandez on November 24, 2010

Despite being 3-0 heading into their match up with Michigan State, the UConn men's basketball team had been looking to make a statement. On Tuesday, they did. Behind 30 points from Kemba Walker, UConn held on to beat the number 2 Spartans 70-67 at the Maui Invitational.

The game was a rematch of the 2009 Final Four, a game won by the Spartans. However, things were different this time around. Walker, who was a freshman in '09, had his fourth straight impressive showing – reaching the 30 points mark for the third times this year. Still, it was more than Walker who helped UConn win. Sophomore Alex Oriakhi contributed 15 points and 17 rebounds, while freshman Shabazz Napier played shut down defense.

"We just played so hard," Walker told the Hartford Courant. "It was just a great, great team effort. This meant a lot to us."

The game was back and forth almost the entire way, and both teams were tied at halftime after Napier hit a shot at the buzzer. However, the game seemed to be slipping out of the Huskies' grasp when Michigan State opened up a 61-55 lead midway through the second half. However, UConn would regain control after an 11-0 run to make it 66-61. After a free throw put Michigan State up 67-66, a jumper by Walker put the Huskies ahead for good.

With Walker’s sensational play so far this year, including a career-high 42 points against Vermont last week, UConn coach Jim Calhoun did not shy away from praising the 6-foot-1 guard

"I've had some pretty good players in my career, some terrific players," Calhoun told the news source. "Kemba is developing into not only one of the great players, but competitors."

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