Vols stun Shockers in Knoxville

Associated Press  |  Last updated December 13, 2012
Trae Golden scored 25 points and Tennessee beat No. 23 Wichita State 69-60 on Thursday night to snap a two-game losing streak and hand the Shockers their first loss of the season. Tennessee shot 47.5 percent to end a brutal offensive slump. In its two games leading up to this one, Tennessee had lost 37-36 to Georgetown in the SEC/Big East Challenge on Nov. 30 and 46-38 at Virginia on Dec. 5. The only other time Tennessee failed to score 40 points since the shot clock was introduced in 1986-87 was a 43-35 loss to Auburn on Jan. 15, 1997. The Volunteers (5-3) are shooting 50.8 percent in their wins and 29.1 percent in their losses this season. Jordan McRae added 17 points for Tennessee. Carl Hall matched a career high with 21 points and had nine rebounds - seven offensive - for Wichita State (9-1), which was seeking the first 10-0 start in school history. The Shockers started 9-0 in 2004-05 and 2006-07. Tennessee won despite playing most of the second half without Jarnell Stokes, the Vols' leading scorer and rebounder. Stokes had six points and seven rebounds while playing just 18 minutes due to foul trouble. Hall's three-point play gave Wichita State a 59-58 lead and was the play Stokes fouled out on with 3:55 remaining. But the Vols outscored the Shockers 11-2 the rest of the way. Golden went 6 of 8 from the free throw line during that game-ending run. He made one of two free throws to tie the game with 3:29 left, then Kenny Hall put Tennessee ahead for good by making two free throws with 3:10 remaining. Tennessee's return to Thompson-Boling Arena revived the Vols' dormant offense. The Vols' 69 points matched the highest total Wichita State had allowed all season. The Shockers beat Air Force 72-69 on Dec. 2. The rejuvenation didn't happen immediately. Tennessee committed five turnovers and scored just two points in the first 4 1/2 minutes of the game. But the Vols eventually settled down and started making the shots they had missed all too often against Georgetown and Virginia. Tennessee led 30-28 at halftime before Wichita State pulled back ahead as Carl Hall scored eight points in the first 5 minutes of the second half. Tennessee honored the memory of former coach Ray Mears, who went 278-112 from 1962-77 and remains the winningest coach in the history of the program. Mears' surviving relatives were given a painting of him at a halftime ceremony that featured about a dozen of his former players.
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