Tigers hang on to beat Little Rock without Wiseman

Tigers hang on to beat Little Rock without Wiseman
(Source: WMC Action News 5)

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - With the James Wiseman situation somewhat settled, a 12 game NCAA suspension that the U of M is appealing, the 16th ranked Tigers set their sights on the Trojans of Little Rock.

Take you downtown to FedExForum Wednesday night where the Tigers are trying to adjust to life after the big fella, as Wiseman watched his teammates go to work without him.

Problem is, the work not quite working out against a highly motivated Trojan team coming in to do some damage. Little Rock jumps up 9 to 0 right off the bat.T

The Tigers shooting less than 40 percent, and turning the ball over left and right -- 19 turnovers in the game. D.J. Jeffries was taken off the bench. The freshman forward from Olive Branch took over the contest with the Memphis down 17 to 9.

Jeffries worked his way for 15 points, all in the first half, as the U of M finally grabbed the lead.

Tigers scored 5 points just before halftime. Precious Achiouwa leads Memphis with 16 points and 12 rebounds.

Tigers go on to win with a final score of 68 to 58. After the game, Head Coach Penny Hardaway shared his thoughts about the game.

“Got the feeling with how the locker room was before the game that these kids were taking Little Rock for granted,” said Penny. “Wasn’t the same energy. I don’t know why. I don’t have any excuses for that. Came out on the floor and got down 9 to 0. I liked when we got down to the last five minutes because it was a close game. Kind of wanted to see what my team was made of. We were at home. I wanted to see who was ready for the moment.”

“I think we came out a little flat footed, the starting five, but that’s the advantage of having a really good team with really good players," said Achiouwa.

Achiouwa also shared comments about Jeffries’ game efforts.

“He came in the game and just carried the team for the next six-seven minutes of the first half," said Achiouwa. "That’s a good thing to have guys on the bench that can come in and make a big impact.”

The Tigers, now 4-1, next host Ole Miss Saturday at noon at FedExForum.

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