A little girl who forged a beautiful bond with the Michigan State basketball team in recent years has sadly lost her battle with cancer.

The announcement was made today that Lacey Holdsworth had passed away Tuesday after a three-year battle with a rare childhood cancer.

Holdsworth had struck an amazing friendship with Michigan b-ball star Adreian Payne in recent years, with the player admitting he had learnt a lot from the girl.

MSU coach Tom Izzo spoke of the impact that the little girl made on him and his team, and gave his best to the family of Holdsworth.

"Even though he knew this was inevitable, it’s hard. But he took it with the class and dignity that she taught him. I told him, "Not everybody gets to touch somebody’s life like you have. And sometimes other people impact your life, too"."

Payne and the eight-year-old met each other two years ago in hospital where the little girl was being treated for the rare childhood cancer Neuroblastoma.

After meeting and talking they became almost brother and sister and ultimately inseparable. Payne continuously showed that his heart off the court was as big as his desire on the court, with several appearance with Holdsworth in public displaying this.

Before her death, the two would text daily, and the little girl became a part of the Michigan State family.

Holdsworth will be missed most importantly by her family, but she will also leave a big impact on the college basketball scene.

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