Texas ends Memphis' eight-game winning streak

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) -- Texas turned out to be too physical for Memphis.

P.J. Tucker had 24 points and 13 rebounds and Daniel Gibson
added 18 points as Texas (No. 16 ESPN/USA Today, No. 15 AP) beat fourth-ranked Memphis 69-58 on Monday, snapping the Tigers' eight-game winning streak.

Texas (11-2), ranked No. 2 for the first five polls of the season before consecutive losses, held Memphis almost 30 points below its average and sealed the win by going 17-of-19 from the free-throw line over the final 8:34.

It was the Longhorns' third straight victory after being blown out first by No. 1 Duke and then unranked Tennessee in Austin last month. Texas coach Rick Barnes couldn't have been happier.

"The environment was great and to come in here and find a way to get it done is huge. I feel good for our guys. Memphis is a very hard team to defend because of the way they play," he said.

The victory was a good send-off for a team heading into Big 12 play Saturday against Colorado.

"This is a pretty big win for us," Tucker said. "We've had two bad losses. This is a good way to jump back for us."

Memphis (11-2) had not lost at home this season and wanted to burnish its record before heading into Conference USA where the Tigers are the league's only ranked team. But they couldn't handle Texas' 2-3 zone, choosing to settle for 3-pointers and then going 6-of-32.

Coach John Calipari credited Texas with helping his Tigers play poorly and for them not taking the ball inside enough.

"Believe me, in every timeout, we were talking about it. Every time we called a timeout, we were trying to go in. But the game got physical and the inclination, you know, instead of going in and getting bumped, 'I'm just going to take this one,'" he said.

LaMarcus Aldridge, the Longhorns' leading scorer, had a season-low 12 points before fouling out. Brad Buckman, who injured his right knee against Duke and missed the Tennessee loss, went 1-of-11 from the field and had six points. His 82-year-old grandmother, Virginia Buckman, died Sunday morning.

"He did well going the distance because he did not even practice yesterday," Barnes said.

Aldridge said they had worked on their zone defense to prepare for the talented Tigers.

"Our man defense was great, but we knew we'd also have to use the zone to disguise our foul trouble. After the loss to Tennessee, everyone took it upon themselves to get better on defense," he said.

Memphis came in with the nation's fifth-best scoring offense (87.3 points), but the Tigers missed 13 of their first 14 shots and finished at a season-low 28.6 percent (20-of-70).

Rodney Carney had 22 points for Memphis but was 3-of-14 from 3-point range, and freshman Shawne Williams was 2-of-14 for 10 points. He said he knew some of his shots were bad.

"They outworked us to the ball, got loose balls. We were shooting. We just didn't make shots," Williams said.

With a sellout crowd on its feet for most of the second half, the Tigers whittled away at Texas' lead with a 17-5 run capped by Darius Washington's 3-pointer from the top of the key. That made it 48-47 with 7:16 to go and was the Tigers' first lead of the game.

Kenton Paulino put Texas back up to stay at 52-50 with a three-point play off a fast-break layup with 6:28 left.

Texas led 29-23 at halftime even though Aldridge went scoreless in the first half and played only 11 minutes after picking up his third foul. Buckman missed his first nine shots.