TEMPE, Ariz. – Texas Southern fell behind early but continued to fight in a game of extended runs as Arizona State claimed a 98-81 decision Saturday afternoon.
The Tigers were within two points on five occasions within the first six minutes but six turnovers and a scoreless drought over the next five minutes fueled a 16-0 ASU run and a 28-12 deficit with 10:11 remaining. The Tigers would respond immediately with a 10-1 run to draw within seven at 29-22 over the next four minutes but ASU, in turn, did the same as they outscored TSU 11-2 to up its lead to 17 (41-24) as the clock read 3:18. Tyrik Armstrong’s jumper would cap off a 9-1 TSU run to draw within 42-33 but ASU scored the final six points of the half to lead 48-33.
Jordan Andrews’ three-pointer would draw the Tigers to 50-40 early in the second half but once again, ASU answered with a 9-0 surge for a 59-40 lead at the 16:35 mark. TSU refused to back down and rode the three-ball to creep back into the contest as they outscored ASU 21-9 over the next five minutes to trail 68-61 after an Eden Ewing three-point play.
The Sun Devils would hit four consecutive shots after the Tiger run to go back up by 15 (77-62) but TSU would close to 81-72 following Ja’Mare Redus’ free throw at the 6:52 mark. TSU would draw within 10 on two occasions late in the contest but couldn’t overcome the deficit as ASU won for the second consecutive year.
John Jones scored a season-high 27 points while Tyrik Armstrong had a double-double with 12 assists and 10 points. Chris Baldwin added 10 points and seven points off the bench in addition to a team-high nine rebounds from Yahuza Rasas.
The Texas Southern Tigers are back in action Monday night for their non-conference finale as they’ll head to College Station, Texas to face Texas A&M at 7 p.m.
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