LOUISVILLE, Ky. --- Tennessee State closed out the non-conference portion of its schedule with a 98-64 loss at nationally-ranked Louisville on Sunday afternoon.
The Tigers cut a first-half 20-point deficit to six points in the first minute of the second half, but the Cardinals then went on a 14-2 run over the next three minutes to regain control of the contest.
TSU was without the services of leading scorer and rebounder Rod Flowers, who sprained his right ankle in a narrow 67-61 loss at Iowa State on Friday night. After pulling to within six points in the second half, Tigers also lost Bruce Price to a knee injury. However, Price would return to the lineup and lead the Tigers with 24 points.
Louisville was 35-of-65 from the field for 54 percent and made 12-of-31 free throws. The Cardinals also held a 45-31 rebounding advantage.
"Louisville is an outstanding team and they put pressure on you with their ability to shoot from 3-point range and with their pressure on the defensive end," said TSU head coach Cy Alexander. "We have played a grueling non-conference schedule that will have us prepared as begin OVC competition."
TSU also got 16 points from forward Eric King. The Tigers made 8-of-24 3-pointers in the game with Price leading the team by making 5-of-10.
The Cardinals placed four players in double figures, led by All-America candidate Francisco Garcia who scored 29 points. Larry O'Brannon and Lorenzo Wade chipped in 14 points each.
TSU plays at Jacksonville State in its OVC opener on Thursday night.