In a riveting showdown, Memphis secured a remarkable 79-77 victory over No. 13 Clemson, fueled by David Jones' standout performance, contributing 22 points, with 16 of them coming in the second half. Jahvon Quinerly played a pivotal role, adding 17 points and six assists to Memphis's triumphant effort.
Nick Jourdain chipped in with 11 points, contributing to Memphis' impressive 8-2 record. On the opposing side, PJ Hall led Clemson with 21 points, complemented by Chauncey Wiggins with 19 points and Chase Hunter with 13.
The tightly contested second half saw the lead change hands frequently, with Memphis gaining momentum after overcoming a halftime deficit. Conditioning played a crucial role, with Memphis outscoring Clemson 47-38 in the latter half.
In the closing moments, Jaykwon Walton's two free throws with 13.5 seconds left helped Memphis secure the hard-fought win. Clemson's Chase Hunter managed to reduce the lead to 79-77 with a successful free throw, but Memphis' Malcolm Dandridge's crucial rebound ensured the Tigers' victory.
Memphis coach Penny Hardaway acknowledged the strategic advantage gained by exploiting Clemson's fatigue, emphasizing the team's commitment to fast transitions and aggressive court play.
The victory adds to Memphis' impressive season, featuring notable wins against teams like Arkansas, Virginia Commonwealth, and Texas A&M. The team's resilience and ability to make key plays down the stretch showcase their potential.
For Clemson, the loss breaks a streak of four single-digit victories. Despite the competitive game, Memphis' strategic adjustments and tenacity secured the win. Clemson now looks ahead to two more non-conference games before resuming ACC play on January 2 against Miami.
Memphis, positioned just outside the Top 25, may find itself entering the rankings following this significant victory. Center Malcolm Dandridge's modest four points don't tell the whole story, as his defensive prowess and crucial rebounds, including the game-sealing grab, played a pivotal role in Memphis' triumph over the ranked opponent.
Source: CBS SPORTS
AP Photo/Jessie Alcheh