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updated: 3/23/2013 4:13 PM

Michigan State advances past Memphis 70-48

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  • Michigan State guard Gary Harris reacts to hitting a 3-pointer against Memphis in the first half of their third-round game of the NCAA college basketball tournament in Auburn Hills, Mich., Saturday March 23, 2013.

      Michigan State guard Gary Harris reacts to hitting a 3-pointer against Memphis in the first half of their third-round game of the NCAA college basketball tournament in Auburn Hills, Mich., Saturday March 23, 2013.

 
Associated Press

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- Gary Harris scored 16 of his career-high 23 points in the first half to help third-seeded Michigan State cruise past sixth-seeded Memphis 70-48 on Saturday, putting the Spartans in the round of 16 for the fifth time in six years.

Michigan State (27-8) will play the winner of the Duke-Creighton game on Friday in the Midwest Regional semifinals at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.

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The Tigers (31-5) advanced in the NCAA tournament for the first time in Josh Pastner's four seasons. The Conference USA champions were eliminated in the third round because they struggled to stop Harris on the outside or his teammates inside all afternoon.

The Spartans' top post players -- Adreian Payne and Derrick Nix -- combined for 27 points and 18 rebounds.

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