MADISON, Wis. -- Keith Appling scored 19 points and Branden Dawson added 18 points and 13 rebounds as Big Ten leader Michigan State escaped the Kohl Center with a 49-47 victory over Wisconsin on Tuesday night.
The No. 13 Spartans (17-3, 6-1) extended their winning streak over the Badgers to four and snapped Wisconsin's seven-game home winning streak in front of 17,249 fans.
Michigan State nursed a 48-44 lead into the final seconds. But Wisconsin had other plans as Ryan Evans hit an open 3-point shot with 16.7 seconds left to cut the deficit to 48-47.
Michigan State's Gary Harris hit the first of a one-and-one but missed the second, leaving the Spartans with a 49-47 lead. That left the Badgers with the ball and 10.2 seconds to work with.
With 3.5 seconds to go, Wisconsin reserve George Marshall was fouled in a flurry under the Badgers bucket but missed both free throws and a chance to tie.
The Spartans successfully inbounded the ball and ran out the final seconds.
Mike Bruesewitz scored 10 points and Evans had 11 rebounds for Wisconsin (13-6, 4-2).
Wisconsin led 28-27 at halftime but claiming a consistent edge proved elusive through much of the second half.
There were five lead changes and a tie until Appling's jumper with 10:03 showing broke a 39-39 tie, giving the Spartans the lead for good.
But Michigan State couldn't pad the margin and its lead didn't grow beyond three points until Dawson hit a free throw with 2:09 to play to open a 48-44 advantage.
The game had a sluggish start, with no scoring through the opening four minutes.
Michigan State was 0 of 4 from the field in that span. Wisconsin missed five straight shots and had two turnovers before Ben Brust hit a 3-pointer to break the scoreless tie.
The Spartans finally got on the board 50 seconds later on a Dawson bucket.
Wisconsin then led for nearly 11 minutes until an Appling 3-pointer tied the score at 19-19. Evans' layup with three seconds remaining gave Wisconsin a 28-27 halftime edge.
Dawson topped all scorers at the half with 11 points and Appling had 10. Bruesewitz paced Wisconsin with eight first-half points.
Wisconsin came in leading the league in defense, allowing 55.8 points per game. Michigan State was third at 58.4 points.
NOTES: Michigan State has been ranked in the Top 25 for 11 straight weeks, plus a No. 14 preseason nod. The Spartans have been as high as No. 13 and as low as 22nd in the two major national polls. ... Wisconsin is just outside the Top 25 this week despite a 64-59 victory over then-No. 2 Indiana on Jan. 15. The Badgers followed with a 70-66 loss Saturday at Iowa. ... The Indiana win tied Wisconsin coach Bo Ryan with UCLA legend John Wooden for 38th place on the NCAA career victories list. Entering play Tuesday, Ryan was 604-209 in 29 seasons. ... Michigan State's Adreian Payne was saluted as a top Big Ten performer after averaging 17 points and six rebounds in two wins last week ... Wisconsin freshman forward Sam Decker was also cited after averaging 11.5 points in two games and shooting 56.3 percent ... The first-place Spartans travel to seventh-ranked Indiana on Sunday, and Wisconsin hosts No. 12 Minnesota on Saturday ... Tuesday's game was the fifth in 13 days for Michigan State. Wisconsin played four times in the same span.