The ASU men’s basketball team picked up its first road victory this season with a win over Tulsa on Saturday, 67-64.
The Sun Devils (3-4) took the lead 56-54 on a layup by junior wing Carrick Felix with 4:54 left and never looked back.
Tulsa (4-5) had a chance to draw within a point late, but ASU junior wing Trent Lockett blocked junior guard Scottie Haralson’s three-point attempt with 13 seconds left.
Lockett finished the game with nine points. He picked up three fouls in the first half, which made it difficult to find a rhythm early scoring just two points.
A number of Sun Devils stepped up to fill his consistent presence offensively, led by sophomore guard Keala King, who has now led the Sun Devils in points in three consecutive games.
King dropped 18 points, four assists and three rebounds. Despite his six turnovers in the game, King was effective in his ability to lead at point guard. He made alert decisions passing the ball for the majority of the game to give ASU high-percentage shots. The Sun Devils shot a season-high 61 percent from the field.
The frontcourt chipped in for perhaps its best collective offensive performance this season. Coach Herb Sendek went with a lineup consisting of two big men for the first time this season — sophomore forward Kyle Cain and sophomore forward Jordan Bachynski at center — rather than three guards and two forwards.
Cain scored 11 points and was effective in the post using different turnaround moves. Cain also added five rebounds in 33 minutes. Bachynski wasn’t as efficient, scoreless in 13 minutes, but junior forward Ruslan Pateev put up a solid performance in 25 minutes off the bench.
“It was a good victory,” King said during a post-game radio interview. “I played good, but I’m going to have to give it to my teammates. Kyle (Cain) stepped up, he hit a lot of jumpers to open the defense and Ruslan (Pateev) played real good.”
Pateev scored eight points, 3-for-4 from the field, and four rebounds. His most impressive move came in the post, faking one way and draining the fade away from just inside the free-throw line — a move that looked very similar to Hakeem Olajuwon’s “Dream Shake.” He was the only player with a positive assist-to-turnover ratio for ASU, 3-to-1.
“I’m happy because it gives Kyle a little rest,” King said. “He’s 7 feet. He’s a big presence on the inside. So for him to play good, it builds his confidence for the next game.”
Felix had 10 points and seven rebounds before he fouled out with 43 seconds left. Freshman forward Jonathan Gilling added six points in nine minutes. He went 2-for-2 from behind the arc.
Haralson also scored all of his points from downtown and accounted for half of Tulsa’s totals from outside, 10-for-19. He had 15 points, 5-for-10 from three-point range, and seven rebounds.
“He was our main focus coming into the game to stop him from three (point range),” King said. “But as you could tell, the guy could shoot so he can’t beat us single-handedly. We just let him shoot and get other players out of their characters.”
Freshman guard Eric McClellan and sophomore guard Jordan Clarkson also had 15 points for the Golden Hurricane, who has now lost five out of its last six games.
ASU returns home to start a stretch of five games at Wells Fargo Arena starting Wednesday against Nevada.
“This win is just going to help us build on our confidence,” King said. “We came into the season to win, so this win meant a lot to us.”
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