MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Jahvon Quinerly scored 25 points, including nine in overtime, as No. 13 Memphis survived another close call defeating UTSA 107-101 on Wednesday night.
David Jones led the Tigers with 26 points and 11 rebounds, while Nick Jourdain finished with 18 points and 12 rebounds as Memphis (14-2, 3-0 American Athletic Conference) won its ninth straight.
Jordan Ivy-Curry led UTSA (7-9, 1-2) with 28 points and nine rebounds. Christian Tucker added 14 points and seven assists while Chandler Cuthrell finished with 13 points.
The Tigers have struggled recently against teams — on paper — they should have dominated. Quinerly connected on last-second 3-pointers to give Memphis wins over Tulsa and SMU to secure their national ranking. Despite the winning streak and escaping with close wins in recent games, Memphis coach Penny Hardaway emphasized his team is still learning.
“This is only going to help pay dividends in the future,” Hardaway said. “I really feel that way. We’re faltering in so many different areas, but we’re making up for it and still winning the game.
“We should have lost this game the way (UTSA) shot the ball.”
The teams were tied at 94 at the end of regulation as the Tigers had to fight the entire game.
Quinerly opened the extra period with a four-point play, and UTSA came close, but never recovered from the deficit.
“A team that scores first in overtime usually has a pretty good advantage,” UTSA coach Steve Henson said when asked for the turning point. “They get a four-point lead, and it’s kind of tough to overcome.”
The Roadrunners 37-35 advantage at the half was fueled by 3-point shooting accuracy early. Ivy-Curry had a trio of 3-pointers and 11 points before the break. They would finish the game 17 of 45 from beyond the arc, making six more 3s than Memphis.
“It doesn’t look like it, but we went into the game to take the 3-pointer away,” Hardaway said.
“They moved the ball and they made shots,” said Tiger guard Jaykwon Walton, who finished with 13 points on 5 of 7 from the field, including 3 of 4 outside the arc. “You make shots, and you’re always going to have a chance.”
One factor that served UTSA well was a lack of turnovers. The Roadrunners committed only eight miscues in the game, a point of emphasis if they were going to stay with the Tigers.
“The biggest thing for us was taking care of the basketball,” Henson said. “To keep them out of transition. They’re a good transition team.”
UTSA: The Roadrunners used 3-point shooting to keep the Tigers on their heels. UTSA was 17 of 45 to stay close throughout. Each time Memphis tried to pull away, UTSA converted a long-range shot. Between converting six more 3-pointers and only eight turnovers, the Roadrunners pushed the game to overtime.
Memphis: As they have in recent games, the Tigers let an opponent hold the lead through the first half. It wasn’t until the overtime period the Memphis crowd could breathe a bit easier. As he had done in the previous two wins, Quinerly’s four-point play to open overtime was the turning point that allowed Memphis to capture another close win.
UTSA: Hosts Charlotte on Saturday.
Memphis: Travels to Wichita State on Sunday.
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