Arizona St. 67, Delaware St. 56
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP)—Ike Diogu had 32 points and nine rebounds, lifting Arizona State to a 67-56 victory over Delaware State on Tuesday night.
Diogu, who set a Pac-10 record with 243 free throws made last season, tied his school record by making 18 this time. His 21 attempts were two short of his standard.
Reserve Kevin Kruger added 12 points for the Sun Devils (2-0).
Jahsha Bluntt scored 17 points for Delaware State (0-3) and Terrance Hunter had 15 and eight rebounds.
The Hornets pushed Arizona State throughout the contest, a second round game of the Las Vegas Invitational.
Delaware State went on an 11-1 run starting late in the first half to tie it at 36 on Bluntt’s two free throws with 18:07 left in the game.
After an Arizona State surge, the Hornets closed within 48-45 when Diogu was too late getting back to stop a floor-length in-bounds pass to Hunter for an easy dunk with 11:12 to go.
But Diogu started a 14-3 surge with a free throw and dunked 31 seconds later for a 51-45 lead with 10:16 remaining. In a 6:22 span ending with Arizona State leading 65-52 with 2:30 to go, Diogu had 10 points on a three-point play, another dunk and five free throws.
Kruger and Diogu, who scored in double figures for the 61st consecutive game, had seven points each during a 23-7 run that lifted the Sun Devils to a 32-22 lead with 3:28 left in the first half.
Diogu restored the 10-point lead with 1:12 to go, sinking a short left-handed hook shot to make it 35-25.
But Delaware State forced two turnovers, and Hunter had two baskets and Bluntt one in the final 36 seconds as the Hornets closed within 35-31 at halftime.