NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP)Liam Robbins had 14 points and nine rebounds and Vanderbilt closed on a 10-3 run to beat Alabama A&M 70-62 on Thursday.
Alabama A&M got within 63-62 with 2:36 remaining, on a long 3-pointer by Messiah Thompson, but the Bulldogs didn’t score again while turning it over on three straight possessions in the final minute.
Jordan Wright rattled in a wide open 3-pointer from the wing with 42.4 seconds left, off a nice pass from the 7-footer Robbins, to extend Vanderbilt’s lead to 66-62. Wright made a steal at the other end and added two free throws with 31.5 left for a six-point lead.
Wright and Ezra Manjon each added 12 points for Vanderbilt (6-6). The Commodores didn’t have a double-digit scorer until Manjon’s basket with 8:13 remaining in the second half.
Vanderbilt trailed 19-11 before going on a 15-0 run, and it was 34-22 after another 8-0 spurt. The Commodores led 34-28 at halftime after despite shooting 35% from the field, including 7 of 25 from distance.
Thompson scored 15 points and Olisa Blaise Akonobi had 14 points and 11 rebounds for Alabama A&M (4-8). Garrett Hicks added 10 points.
Vanderbilt closes the calendar year against SE Louisiana on Dec. 30 before beginning conference play against South Carolina on Jan. 3. Alabama A&M plays at Ohio State on Dec. 29.
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