Keith Appling scored 19 points and Branden Dawson added 18 to lead No. 13 Michigan State to a 49-47 victory over Wisconsin on Tuesday night.
Mike Bruesewitz led Wisconsin (13-6, 4-2 Big Ten) with 10 points.
Both teams went more than 4 minutes without scoring down the stretch. Dawson broke the drought, hitting one of two from the free throw line to put the Spartans (17-3, 6-1) up 48-44 with just over 2 minutes left.
Ryan Evans' 3-pointer from the wing with 17 seconds left pulled Wisconsin within 48-47.
Michigan State freshman Gary Harris was fouled and hit front end of a 1-and-1, but rimmed out the second, leaving Michigan State up 49-47.
Wisconsin's George Marshall, who missed practice Monday because he was sick, was fouled with 3.5 seconds left. He missed the first free throw and intentionally tried to miss the second but he didn't draw iron, giving the ball to the Spartans.