Spartans top Badgers in overtimePublished 7:34pm Sunday, October 28, 2012
MADISON —Michigan State and Wisconsin’s string of thrilling clashes again came down to the game’s final plays as embattled Spartan quarterback Andrew Maxwell engineered a 75-yard game tying drive with just over a minute to play and then found Benny Fowler on a perfect TD pass in overtime to knock off the Wisconsin Badgers 16-13 in Big Ten play Saturday.
An elated Spartan coach Mike Dantonio said the outcome was “huge” for his team now and moving forward.
“This is the first win at Camp Randall since I’ve been here, it’s a big deal,” he said. “We knew what we had to do and we got it done. We grew up a little today,”
Wisconsin’s second longest home winning streak was snapped as they lost at Camp Randall for the first time since Iowa beat the Badgers (6-3, 3-2) in 2009. It was also the first time since 2001 that MSU (5-4, 2-3) got a win in Madison.
It may have taken 58-minutes of game-play for the much-maligned Spartan offense to post their first TD of the day. But with the game (and possibly bowl eligibility) at stake, Maxwell and co. delivered back-to-back touchdown drives in their team’s time of need.
The Badger’s struck first when freshman quarterback Joel Stave hit tight end Jacob Pederson on a 31-yard touchdown strike with just under 14 minutes left to play in the first half.
Other than a Dan Conroy 34-yard field goal on the ensuing Spartan drive, scores would come few and far between as both team’s defenses took over a large portion of the remainder of the game.
A Badgers’ offense that is built to run over and through teams had its lowest output in the past five years as they gained only 19 yards on 36 against the vaunted MSU defense. Wisconsin was dealt a huge blow when Stave was injured on the first play of the third quarter. Subsequently, the Badgers were held to 190 yards total on the day.
The Spartans offense faired only slightly better, passing for 216 yards and rushing for 61 yards for 277 yards total. Spartan feature back Le’veon Bell may have only had 77 yards rushing but he also caught the all important touchdown pass that sent the game into overtime. Maxwell finished 24-of-39 for 216 yards and two touchdowns.
MSU will hope to sustain the momentum gained by the big win next week when it hosts Nebraska at Spartan Stadium.
Michigan State 0 3 0 7 6 – 16
Wisconsin 0 7 0 3 3 – 13
WISC – Joel Stave 31 pass to Jacob Pederson (Kyle French kick)
MSU – Dan Conroy 34 field goal
WISC – French 39 field goal
MSU – Andrew Maxwell 5 pass to Le’veon Bell (Conroy kick)
MSU – Maxwell 12 pass to Bennie Fowler