SMU overcomes deficit to take down Memphis, 64-58
Mustangs defeat Tigers for second straight year in Dallas
Memphis nearly surrendered a double-digit lead on Saturday, but it survived that scare against East Carolina.
However, the Tigers (12-4, 1-1) couldn't escape another poor second half effort on Wednesday, as they dropped a 64-58 decision to SMU in Dallas.
SMU (10-6, 1-1) trailed by as many as 14 in the first half, but the Ponies closed the opening 20 minutes on a 16-4 run to pull within 32-30 at the break.
Memphis increased its lead back to double figures in the first eight minutes of the second half and was up 48-37 with just over 11 minutes to go.
However, the Tigers endured a significant drought and were outscored 21-2 over a nine-minute span. That run allowed the Ponies to surge ahead 58-50--which was their biggest advantage of the contest.
Mustang veteran post player Papa Dia converted a free throw to complete a three-point play that gave SMU its first lead at 51-48 with 3:16 remaining.
While Memphis did shoot 47 percent (25-of-53) for the game, the Tigers were horrific from the free throw line. They concluded the contest 3-for-13 and were an amazing 0-for-9 after halftime.
SMU managed to pull the mild upset despite taking 11 less shots. This was due to them being 9-of-16 from beyond the arc and 15-of-22 from the charity stripe.
Papa Dia tallied a double-double for the Ponies while Robert Nyakundi and Collin Mangrum also scored in double figures. Dia finished with 22 points and ten boards. Nyakundi and Mangrum had 15 each.
The Tigers were led by Joe Jackson, who had 15. Wesley Witherspoon scored 11 while Will Barton grabbed a team-high six boards.
Thomas "Bubba" Rosenbaum
CUSA Staff Writer