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Arizona State Wins Fourth Straight With 76-74 Win Over SMU

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The Sun Devils are on a roll. They have now won four straight and came from as many as 13 down in the second half to beat SMU 76-74.

Jose Perez led the Sun Devils with 20 points and four rebounds. Frankie Collins made it a dynamic duo with 17 points and four steals.

First Half

The Sun Devils would start this game fast, scoring 18 points in the first seven minutes. They had an 18-8 lead and looked very good with three threes then. However, SMU would go on a 10-3 run to bring the lead to two. That lead would eventually be gone as Zhuric Phelps scored five points in a row to tie the score at 26.

From there, it was back and forth when Bryant Selebangue got fouled twice and made three free throws to go up 34-33. However, SMU would score seven in a row to take a six-point lead with 35 seconds to go in the first half. Jose Perez would get fouled on the buzzer-beater and make both free throws to turn this into a 40-36 game in the half.

Jose Perez led Arizona State with 9 points in the first half. Seven of those points came from the free-throw line. ASU shot 41% from three in the first half, which is just another first half where we see the Sun Devils’ turnaround. Zhuric Phelps and Chuck Harris led the Mustangs with 11 and 10 points each in the half. The Sun Devils stayed in this game due to going 15/18 from the free-throw line.

Second Half

The first six minutes of the second half were crazy. Almost every drive resulted in points for each team as the Sun Devils could come back and take and only be down 51-50. This included six more points from Jose Perez.

However, things took a bad turn for the Sun Devils after that. The Mustangs would make six straight layups as ASU missed five straight shots. They would take a 63-50 lead, and Arizona State looked doomed.

So, what does this current ASU team do? They went on a 22-3 run that included seven free throws, three ASU dunks, and two by Frankie Collins, who also hit a three to start the run. The score went from 63-50 to 72-66 Sun Devils. Phelps made a jumper to close the gap to four, then no one could score.

It took 90 seconds for another team to score: SMU, who made one free throw to make it 72-69. The free-throw game started, and ASU came out on top. They made four of six free throws in the final 30 seconds to take the game. SMU would drain a buzzer-beater three in garbage time to end the game at 76-74.

Frankie Collins and Jose Perez had 14 and 11 points in the second half alone, adding up to 17 and 20 points, respectively. ASU only shot 36% from the field but took 43 free throws and made 32. For comparison, SMU only went 10-19 from the free-throw line. So, even though they shot 45% from the field, the free-throw shooting really carried ASU to victory. SMU was led by Phelps, who had 24, while Harris had 17.

What’s Next:

My prediction was off on points by a bit, as I had ASU winning 74-67. But I did predict it would be a Jose Perez game, which I was right about. This game brings ASU to 6-2, and SMU drops to 6-4. Arizona State is on fire and will use this momentum as they head on the road to San Diego to face the Toreros.

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