SEATTLE – The Texas Southern men’s basketball team fought to end but Washington held on in the final 1:40 to secure a 72-65 win Monday night.
The first half was intense and set the tone for what was going to happen late in the contest as there were a total of eight lead changes in the half. TSU would lead by as much as four points on four occasions in the half as Justin Hopkins’ trey with 47 seconds left would give TSU a 37-33 halftime lead.
Karl Nicholas’ layup with 19 minutes left gave TSU a 39-34 lead which would hold until the 17:43 mark after a game-tying trey from Washington. A TSU turnover and missed three-pointer led to Washington reclaiming a 43-41 lead but TSU would take the lead back with 13:14 left after Hopkins’ jumper. Nicholas recorded a big block on the ensuing defensive possession which led to his own layup and a 50-47 lead with 12:50 left. The Tigers suffered two untimely turnovers over the next minute which led to UW regaining a 51-50 lead after Daejon Davis’ jumper.
The lead would flip on several occasions over the next few minutes with UW regaining a 58-56 lead after a three-pointer with 7:08 left. A TSU turnover led to a UW basket and a 60-56 deficit at the 6:44 mark. TSU would miss its next five shots and was held scoreless for three minutes in addition to three costly turnovers which led to a 63-56 deficit with 4:26 left. Jordan Gilliam’s layup ended the drought with 3:17 remaining and the TSU offense found its groove as Nicholas’ layup cut the deficit to 63-60 as the clock read 2:07. A TSU foul led to a pair of Husky free throws but TSU would counter with John Walker III’s jumper to remain within three at 65-62 with 1:40 left. UW’s three-point attempt was short on the next possession but a TSU foul flipped the game as UW recorded a pair of free throws to move ahead 67-62. TSU would commit a shot clock violation right after and Washington went 5-of-6 from the charity stripe down the stretch to secure the win in the first-ever meeting between both schools.
Nicholas led TSU with 16 points and six boards while Hopkins scored 11. PJ Henry chipped in with 10 points, four rebounds and three assists. John Walker III added nine points with three blocks.
TSU continues its road swing at Air Force on Wednesday in Colorado Springs, Colo. at 8 p.m.