Thursday, January 19, 2017

Tigers 70, Houston 67 (OT)

Posted By on Thu, Jan 19, 2017 at 10:45 PM

The Tigers erased a five-point deficit in the last three minutes of regulation, then outscored Houston 6-3 in a sloppy overtime period to earn their biggest win of the season to date. Redshirt-freshman K.J. Lawson emerged from a midseason slump and achieved career highs in both points (28) and rebounds (16) to help Memphis improve to 14-5 on the season and move ahead of the Cougars in the American Athletic Conference standings with a 4-2 league record. Memphis is now 2-1 on the road in AAC play and has won both of its overtime games this season.
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Sophomore forward Dedric Lawson earned his 14th double-double of the season with 18 points and 10 rebounds before fouling out barely a minute into the overtime period. (He's now tied with Lorenzen Wright for eighth in program history with 31 career double-doubles.)

Point guard Jeremiah Martin converted a three-point play on the receiving end of a lengthy pass by K.J. Lawson with 12 seconds to play in regulation to seize a 64-62 lead. But Cougar forward Chicken Knowles dropped in a short put-back with just three seconds left to force the extra session.

Junior guard Markel Crawford hit a short leaner to give the Tigers a 69-65 lead with just under two minutes to go in overtime, a field goal that proved to be the clincher. Memphis committed an ugly turnover on an inbounds play with less than 15 seconds left, but the Cougars missed a pair of three-point attempts to tie the game.

Crawford finished with 9 points and 11 rebounds, while Martin had 10 points for the victors. The AAC's leading scorer, Rob Gray, led Houston with 21 points. The Cougars fell to 13-6 (4-3).

The Tigers won despite missing 12 of 21 free-throw attempts and committing 16 turnovers. They won the rebounding battle, though, 47-40.

Memphis returns home Sunday to host UCF at FedExForum. Tip-off is scheduled for 3 p.m.


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