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No. 19 Memphis knocks off Austin Peay

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David Jones scored 19 points and No. 19 Memphis struggled at times before securing an 81-70 victory against visiting Austin Peay in its nonconference finale Saturday night.

Nae’Quan Tomlin and Nick Jourdain both had 12 points for the Tigers (11-2), who pushed their winning streak to six games.

But it took a long time to gain much separation and even some late-game anxiety to clinch the outcome.

Dezi Jones had 20 points, nine rebounds and five assists for Austin Peay (7-8), which was denied what could have been its second-ever victory against a Top 25 team. Dez White added 11 points.

The Tigers, who were in their fourth straight home game, won despite shooting 41 percent from the field and going 4-for-18 on 3-point attempts. The Tigers were coming off a one-week layoff.

Memphis made 27 of 31 free throws, while Austin Peay made just 5 of 10 foul shots. Jones, who came up just short of his seventh consecutive 20-point outing, was good on all nine of his free-throw attempts for Memphis, though he was 5-for-14 from the field and missed all four of his 3-point tries.

Tomlin’s 15 rebounds helped Memphis hold a 48-39 edge on the boards. The Tigers were credited with a 42-24 scoring advantage in points in the paint.

The Governors relied heavily on 3-point shooting and made 11 of those launches but they took 36.

The score was tied at 48 before a 16-3 run for Memphis. Jayhlon Young, a reserve, helped spark that with five points during the run.

Then at 74-61, Austin Peay’s Jones scored five straight points. He made two free throws with 1:24 left to pull the Governors within 76-70.

Memphis was up 37-34 at halftime. The Tigers were hoping to have better energy after a rugged stretch earlier in the month that seemed to zap energy from the team despite numerous positive results.

Austin Peay fell to 1-6 in road games.

–Field Level Media

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