The ASU men’s basketball team’s early season success carried on in its first true road test of the season.
With the help of 14-of-27 from the 3-point line, the Sun Devils (10-2) left Lubbock, Texas with a 77-62 over Texas Tech. With the win over the Red Raiders (5-3), the Sun Devils have already matched their win total from last year just 12 games into the new season.
It took little time for the Sun Devils to find their outside rhythm. ASU hit five 3-pointers in the first five minutes of the game — three from sophomore Jonathan Gilling in that stretch. The Sun Devils held the lead for most of the first half and were on top by as much as 15 points at the nine-minute mark, but poor shooting and a defensive lapse only narrowed the advantage to six points as ASU went into halftime with a 42-26 lead over Texas Tech.
Gilling finished the half with 15 points on 5-of-8 shooting from the 3-point line. He added one more triple in the second half to set a new career-high in 3-point field goals with six and ended the game with 18 points.
The Sun Devils had trouble maintaining their lead to open the second half. Junior center Jordan Bachynski went into the locker room with an apparent ankle injury and didn’t return for the rest of the game. Senior wing Carrick Felix, who was active in virtually every facet of the game the first 15 minutes, was limited in the second half due to foul trouble.
Texas Tech continued to narrow down ASU’s lead several times throughout the first 10 minutes of the game. The Red Raiders then had trouble shooting and taking care of the ball, and a 10-0 run that was singlehandedly led by ASU redshirt freshman guard Jahii Carson put the game out of reach from Texas Tech for the rest of the game.
Despite having a quiet start in the first half, Carson finished the game with 18 points on 7-of-14 shooting and five assists. Felix had 13 points, nine rebounds, three assists and three blocks.
Senior center Ruslan Pateev, who has not seen the court much this season, chipped in four points and three rebounds in 12 minutes of play in Bachynski’s absence.
ASU will play its last nonconference game of the season on Dec. 29 vs. Coppin State before opening Pac-12 play on Jan 2 at home vs. Utah.
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