Tennessee 69, Lipscomb 58

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- C.J. Watson scored 18 points and made
nine free throws down the stretch to help Tennessee beat Lipscomb
69-58 on Thursday night.

The Volunteers (8-1) struggled most of the game to pull away
from the Bisons (5-5), who had the lead in the first half and
trailed by only two early in the second.

Tennessee had trouble getting shots to fall and got few easy
baskets. Lipscomb, picked to finish fourth in the Atlantic Sun
Conference, stayed in the game with quickness and timely scoring.

Tennessee is the third Southeastern Conference opponent for
Lipscomb this season. The Bisons lost 67-49 at Kentucky and 69-54
at Auburn.

This game was in doubt late. The Vols led by 10 with 6:36 left,
but a basket by Cameron Robinson and a 3 by Brian Fisk cut it to

Then Watson took over at the foul line, making 9 of 10 free
throws in the final 3:48 as the Vols were able to pull away. Watson
was 13-of-14 from the line for the game.

The loss overshadowed the performance by Lipscomb's Eddie Ard,
who scored 24 points. He had 22 against Kentucky and was averaging
a team-high 13.7 points a game. Fisk finished with 19 points.

Major Wingate scored 13 points and Stanley Asumnu added 11 for
the Vols, who narrowly avoided their first home loss under new
coach Bruce Pearl.

The Vols shot 21-of-55 from the floor. The Bisons had 21

Tennessee opened the second half with a 10-2 run to go ahead

Lipscomb trimmed the lead to a basket twice afterward, but the
Vols started to find easy baskets with a backward dunk by JaJuan
Smith off a steal and Wingate's slam for a 48-40 lead with 12:08 to

The Vols led by nine early, but Lipscomb used a 13-3 run to go
ahead. James Poindexter, Ard and Trey Williams hit consecutive
3-pointers to cap the rally. Tennessee responded with a 7-0 run to
regain the lead, and Lipscomb fought back with its own 7-0 spurt.

The Bisons maintained the lead until the final 10 seconds before
halftime when Watson's pair of free throws gave the lead back to
the Vols.