SANTA CLARA, Calif. – In the consolation game of the 46th Cable Car Classic, SMU took down Alcorn State by a final of 67-52. The win pushes the Mustangs to 8-4 and a third place finish while the Braves fall to 2-11 and a fourth place finish.
Jalen Jones led SMU with 19 points and nine rebounds. The Mustangs shot 52.4% (22-42) from the field and were an impressive 20-21 from the free throw line. Marquiz Baker of Alcorn State led all scorers with 24 points and nailed four from downtown. The Braves shot 32.7% (16-49) from the field.
Alcorn State won the tip and Baker attempted a layup but was fouled. He knocked down both free throws to give the Braves a 2-0 lead seven seconds into the game.
SMU got on the board at 16:49 on a pair of free throws by Manuel to make the score 5-2.
Cannen Cunningham of SMU scored the first field goal of the game at 15:37 to get the Mustangs within one but Baker made the first field goal for Alcorn State on a three ball at 15:23 to push the lead out to four at 8-4.
SMU would answer the next time down the floor with a triple from Shawn Williams and then Manuel hit two from the charity stripe to give the Mustangs their first lead of the game at 9-8.
After trading baskets, the Mustangs built a four point lead at 17-13 on a pair of free throws by Uche Ofoegbu at 8:28 and a layup by Jones at 7:54.
Anthony Evans of Alcorn State nailed a three out of the under eight media timeout to get his team within one but Jones answered with a layup at the other end to make it a three point lead with six and a half minutes remaining in the opening half.
SMU went on a 6-0 run over 3:23 to build a seven-point lead at 23-16 before Baker hit two free throws to score the first Alcorn State points in just under four minutes.
Manuel hit two free throws and Jones stole an errant dribble and went all the way for a layup to make the score 29-21 with 1:36 left in the half.
With 18 seconds remaining in the first half, Ofoegbu hit a jumper from the corner to put the lead at 31-23 SMU. The Mustangs had the last possession of the half and Nick Russell hit a runner in the lane as time expired to give the Mustangs a 10-point lead entering halftime.
Baker of Alcorn State led all scorers in the first half with 12 points. The Braves shot just 29.4% (5-17) from the field and were 9-12 from the free throw line. SMU's Jones scored 10 to lead his team while also leading both teams with seven rebounds. The Mustangs shot 47.8% (11-23) from the field and were a perfect 10-10 from the charity stripe. SMU dominated in the paint scoring 16 points to Alcorn State's zero.
Out of halftime the teams traded baskets with SMU able to build its lead to 45-31 at the first media timeout with 13:24 left in the game.
Leantwan Luckett nailed two free throws for the Braves and Baker hit a three to cut the lead to 45-36 with 10:49 remaining in regulation.
The Braves cut the lead to single digits again with eight and a half minutes remaining on a three by Anthony Nieves that made the score 50-41 but Russell answered on the ensuing possession with a three to make the score 53-41.
SMU used a layup and a three pointer to extend its run to 8-0 over 1:17 and build a game-high 17-point lead at 58-41.
Alcorn State ended the run with a bucket and a foul on a layup by Ian Francis. He was unsuccessful on the free throw but Baker grabbed the round and put it back in to cut the lead to 13.
SMU was able to hold on to its lead and won the game 67-52.