Devocio Butler and Eden Ewing both finished a rebound shy of a double-double, as each player scored 17 points and pulled in nine rebounds to lead the Tigers (11-11, 6-3 SWAC).
Tyrik Armstrong and John Jones scored 13 points apiece for the Tigers, who won their third consecutive game. Armstrong also came close to a double-double, as he handed out nine assists in the game; he also recorded a team-high four steals Monday.
The Bulldogs were led by Bryan Houston’s 15 points. Alabama A&M (4-19) fell to 3-6 in Southwestern Athletic Conference play.
Texas Southern took a 44-43 lead into halftime thanks to a buzzer-beating 3-point shot by Armstrong. Alabama A&M seized momentum early and the second half and built a 59-50 lead with six minutes into the frame, shooting 6-of-8 from the field in the process.
But before the Bulldogs could add more to their lead, the Tigers responded a 13-2 run and reclaimed a 63-61 lead with 9:54 remaining in the second half. Ewing scored six points during that run, while Jones chipped in five – including three consecutive free throws to tie the game at 61-61 after getting fouled shooting a 3-point shot.
Shortly thereafter, the Tigers would embark on a 9-0 run that would stretch their lead to 74-65 with 6:36 remaining in the contest. Alabama A&M would get no closer than six points the rest of the way.
The win was TSU’s 11th consecutive triumph over Alabama A&M, and 22nd win over the Bulldogs in their last 23 meetings. The Bulldogs’ last win over TSU came in 2014; they have not defeated the Tigers in Houston since 2008.
TSU’s ability to get to the free throw line was key in the victory over the Bulldogs. The Tigers shot 31 free throws, making 21 of them for a free throw percentage of 68 percent. Alabama A&M only shot 13 free throws making 11 of them (85 percent).
Shawn Olden II chipped in 10 points for the Tigers; he was 2-of-3 from 3-point range and made four free throws.
The Tigers return to action Saturday when they host in-state rival Prairie View A&M. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m., and will start approximately 20 minutes after the conclusion of the women’s game between the two schools.