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No. 15 Memphis rallies to clip SMU, 62-59


Jahvon Quinerly’s stepback 3-pointer with 3 seconds remaining capped a gritty comeback as the 15th-ranked Memphis Tigers outlasted visiting SMU 62-59 on Sunday afternoon in an American Athletic Conference slugfest.

The Mustangs led by 12 points at halftime before going cold from the floor early in the second half, missing 10 of their first 12 shots in the first 8-plus minutes after the break. Memphis (13-2, 2-0 AAC) took its first lead of the game on David Jones’ three-point play with 8:19 to play and expanded the margin to 52-48 on Quinerly’s 3-pointer on its next possession.

A second-chance 3-pointer by Ricardo Wright pulled the Mustangs to within 58-57 with 2:40 remaining and a free throw by Tyreek Smith 39 seconds later tied the game at 58. Both teams squandered chances in the final minute until Quinerly hit his contested game winner that was the Tigers’ first field goal in more than 4 1/2 minutes.

SMU’s Chuck Harris was fouled with 1 second left, made the first free throw and purposely missed the second, then committed a foul on the rebound attempt. The Tigers’ Malcolm Dandridge made one of two free throws with 0.3 to play to close out the win.

Jones led Memphis with 17 points, with Quinerly adding 11 and Jaykwon Walton scoring 10. The Tigers have won eight straight games, with six of those by six points or less.

Smith paced SMU’s balanced attack with 12 points. The Mustangs (10-5, 1-1) had a four -game winning streak snapped.

The Mustangs were up by just a point before reeling off a 10-2 run that was punctuated by a dunk by Smith that pushed their lead to 22-13 at the 7:52 mark of the first half. Ja’Heim Hudson’s layup nearly three minutes later pushed SMU’s margin to 15 points before the Tigers mounted a comeback, pulling to within 30-22 after Jayhlon Young’s layup with 2:58 to play in the half.

SMU was undaunted, using a pair of free throws by Phelps and then a putback layup by Samuell Williamson to carry a 36-24 lead to the break.

Smith and Phelps scored 9 points each for the Mustangs to lead all scorers before halftime. Walton paced Memphis with 7 points in the first half.

–Field Level Media

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