MINNEAPOLIS, MINN. - It was a tough night shooting for Tennessee State as the Tigers lost 72-43 to the Minnesota Golden Gophers in front of 10,107 fans at Williams Arena Thursday night.
It was a game of runs early on as the Golden Gophers (3-0) scored the first nine points of the game. The Tigers (0-3) answered with six straight of their own, the first coming on a
Kellen Thornton one hand jam. Minnesota responded with another 9-0 run to push the lead to 18-6 just before the 11 minute mark of the first half.
Thornton led TSU with 11 points and had a career-high 13 rebounds in 28 minutes. It's the most rebounds by a TSU player not named Robert Covington since Jerrell Houston had 16 boards vs. Southeast Missouri State on Feb. 26th, 2009.
Tennessee State pulled to within 10 with just under six minutes left in the first half on a Covington three. The Tigers were not able to trim the lead any further as the Gophers had a strong finish to the half going on a 14-2 run before DeShawn Dockery made a layup in the closing seconds.
Minnesota had a 39-21 halftime edge shooting 48 percent from the field versus just 29 percent for TSU.
It was more of the same in the second half as the Gopher defense shut down the TSU offensive attack, limiting the Tigers to just six made field goals and 18 percent shooting.
TSU shot 23 percent for the game.
Covington and Jordan Cyphers joined Thornton with double figures in points as each had 10.
TSU hits the road once again next week for the Coaches versus Cancer Tournament in Atlanta, Ga. The Tigers will square off against South Alabama on Nov. 19, Georgia State on Nov. 20 and Monmouth on Nov. 21.