|December 14, 2016||1st||2nd||Final|
|Stats at a Glance||ALST||TSUMBB|
|FG Percentage||.254 (15-59)||.472 (25-53)|
|3P FG Percentage||.143 (3-21)||.294 (5-17)|
|FT Percentage||.481 (13-27)||.591 (13-22)|
WILLIAMS - 3
PHOTO GALLERY - By Sam Jordan
NASHVILLE ---The Tennessee State men’s basketball team put on a dominating defensive performance on Wednesday night at the Gentry Center, defeating visiting Alabama State by a 68-46 final score. Jordan Reed (Philadelphia, Pa.) posted a team-high 13 points to go with 13 rebounds for Wayne Martin (Brooklyn, N.Y.).
Tennessee State (8-2) held the Hornets (1-9) to 25.4 percent shooting (15-for-59) and limited ASU to 13 first-half points. The Tigers also finished with 10 blocks and forced 21 turnovers.
Tennessee State sprinted out of the gate with an early 8-2 advantage four minutes into the game. TSU’s defense locked the Hornets down as the Tigers’ lead grew to double-digits at 22-12 on the second first-half three from Darreon Reddick (Belleville, Ill.) with 7:49 to go before halftime.
Tennessee State closed the first half on a 24-1 run, keeping the Hornets without a field goal for the last 8:47 of the half for a 40-13 halftime edge.
The Tigers held Alabama State to 18.5 percent shooting (5-for-27) in the first half and forced ASU in 11 first-half turnovers.
TSU reached 50 points in a frantic sequence where Christian Mekowulu (Lagos, Nigeria) and Xavier Williams (Fairfield, Ala.) had blocks on ASU's offensive possession leading to a three from Delano Spencer (Atlanta, Ga.) on the other end for a 50-19 lead with 14:20 left in the game.
The Tigers continued to dominate throughout the second half, leading by as many as 32 points with just over 12 minutes to play.
McCall dished out six assists to facilitate the offense with Mekowulu scoring in double figures with 12.
Tony Armstrong scored a team-best 13 points for the Hornets on the night.
Next up, TSU heads to Durham, N.C. to face Duke on Dec. 19 for a 7 p.m. ET (6 p.m. CT) start. The game will air live on ESPN2.
GAME NOTES: TSU moves to 19-9 in the all-time series versus Alabama State… It is TSU’s first win in the series since the 1977-78 season… Tennessee State is 8-2 through 10 games for the second year in a row… Nine different TSU players scored in the first half… The 13 points allowed by TSU in the first half were the fewest this season. It is the second time TSU has held an opponent under 20 points this season... The Tigers are now 2-0 at the Gentry Center this season and 18-11 in Head Coach Dana Ford’s three-year tenure… The previous most blocks TSU had in a game this season was five on four occasions. It is the first time TSU has had 10 or more blocks since recording 10 at TCU on Dec. 29, 2014.
Head Coach Dana Ford
“I was really pleased with our guys maturate tonight. Their competitiveness, especially early in the first half; and I felt like we came out and paid attention to detail. We had a purpose to use defensively, something we try to emphasize every day. I’m just really happy that we were able to hold a lead for most of the game and never really feel threatened. We also had the opportunity to play some people who have not played a lot and hopefully we built some confidence. And then we were able to rest guys who have been logging a lot of minutes. All-in-all it was a good night for us.”
- On Teams Performance
“I thought we had a lot of purpose to us. We sat down and guarded the ball and we had a tremendous amount of urgency, we communicated and tried not to get screened. Those are the things that really help you defend. They missed some shots too, but I thought we contested shots as well. Whenever we can get to the point where we allow teams just one shot at the rim, I think it is going to be even better. Tonight we gave up 18 offensive rebounds and that is something we are going to need and clean up. We still have work to do.”
- On Key to Defensive Performance
“I think it is very important. It is a good place to be. We want to build leads and we feel we are deep enough to do that against certain opponents. We’ve gotten out to leads this past year and not hold on to them. If you want to be good in March and you want to be good in the league race, well then you have to be able to start fast and finish strong. I thought for the most part we did that today. Human nature sneaks in a bit when you hold a team to 13 points in one half, and that is something we need to try and eliminate. It’s a long year and we have a lot of room for improvement. We will take tonight and move on.”
- On the Importance to Holding a Lead
“I think they are the best team in America. Definitely the best coach in America. Very talented and they do a tremendous job at Duke. Everything is first class. They’re champions. You do not even have to know people inside the program to tell you what you are dealing with. You can see it from the outside looking in. Now that this game is over we’ll dive into them and try to put together the best game plan available to give our guys the best chance to go out there and win the next game. We are just very appreciative, our entire university, our program and our alums, that we are going to have the opportunity to play at Cameron Indoor Stadium against a first class program.”
- On the Upcoming Game at Duke
Junior Guard, Darreon Reddick
“I thought it was a good game. It showed our leadership and how mature we are after coming off a tough road loss against an ACC opponent. We came back home and grinded during practice and get better for our game against Alabama State.”
- On the Teams Play Against Alabama State
“It’s hard to scout our team when everybody can score between eight and 15. You don’t know who is going to be hot on any night. Balance Scoring is good; it makes you hard to scout and hard to guard.”
- On the Teams Balance Scoring
“It is a big game on national TV against the number one team in the nation. It is going to be a challenge, but we are ready for it and we are going to go out, play hard and compete.”
- On Playing Duke
Redshirt Senior Guard, Jordan Reed
“I trusted my shots. I have been working with the coaches. Its maturity as far as not looking at an opponent, we were just trying to get better.”
- On what was Working Individually
“It was about taking on the challenge. One of our main goals every game, which is compete, so that’s what I tried to do.”
- On Key to the Defense
“I feel like it is an outstanding opportunity to show the nation the team we really and truly are. We are excited to have a chance to play this game.”
- On the Opportunity to Play Duke