Tigers Beat ORU in Round One - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Dave Cera

Tigers Beat ORU in Round One

DALLAS (AP) - Andre Allen isn't the Memphis player opposing teams consider a serious threat. He's a 5-foot-10 guard who comes off the bench and doesn't make a lot of shots, especially from long range. In the first round of the NCAA tournament, Miller had quite a 2½-minute spurt late in the first half, providing the spark the top-seeded Tigers needed to finally push ahead of feisty Oral Roberts en route to a 94-78 victory Friday. "There's a star born in all of these games and today it seemed to be Andre Allen," Memphis coach John Calipari said. Allen matched his season high, scoring all 11 of his points with three 3-pointers in that quick burst after Oral Roberts took a 33-29 lead. He had made 15 3s all season, with only three the previous 16 games, two of them coming in the same game a month ago. "We thought he was a driver mostly," Oral Roberts' Ken Tutt said. "He stepped up and hit the shots. We didn't adjust early enough."

Oral Roberts (21-12) still led by a point before Allen hit a 3-pointer from the left side. After a miss by the Golden Eagles, Allen hit a long-range shot from the right side, and added another 3 with 2:58 left to put the Tigers up 44-35. "My job is usually to help the team by playing defense and leading the club," Allen said. "But they were giving me shots, so I had to take them. We all have the green light if we're open." Conference USA player of the year Rodney Carney had 19 points to lead five players in double figures for Memphis (31-3), which played its first game as a No. 1 seed. The Tigers tied a team record for wins, matching the 1984-85 team that went to the Final Four. 

The Tigers certainly seemed vulnerable when Tutt's ally-oop pass was tipped in by Larry Owens to put Oral Roberts up 33-29 with 5:39 left before halftime. But Allen helped turn things around in a hurry, and keyed a 20-2 run with his layup after Carney made a free throw. Green then made two free throws with 4:36 left to put Oral Roberts in front 35-34, its last lead before the three 3s by Allen. "They were backing off on Andre and he was knocking 'em down. Our depth is great. We've got guys who can step up," Darius Washington said. "People have no choice now but to jump on the Memphis bandwagon."

The Tigers play Bucknell in the second round of the Oakland Regional on Sunday. The Bison beat Arkansas 59-55 earlier Friday.

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