Vanderbilt overcame miserable free throw shooting by putting five players in double figures for a 75-66 victory over Morgan State on Saturday in a losers' bracket game in the Paradise Jam Tournament in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
The Commodores made just 15 of 32 free throws (46.9 percent) but got 16 points from senior guard Kyle Fuller off the bench, 13 from center Damian Jones, 12 from guard Eric McClellan, and 11 each from forwards Rod Odom and Luke Kornet.
Morgan State guard Justin Black led all scorers with 18 points. Center Ian Chiles added 15 and guard Anthony Hubbard 12.
The win snapped a two-game losing streak for the Commodores (3-2) and put them over .500 for the season.
The winless Bears (0-6) dropped their seventh in a row dating back to their loss in the championship game of last season's Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference tournament.
The Commodores led the rest of the way after breaking a 4-4 tie on Fuller's 3-pointer three minutes into the game, but their poor free throw shooting kept them from breaking away.
The Bears got a 14-point halftime deficit into single digits early in the second half, then trimmed a 12-point gap with 2:26 remaining down to five points, 71-66, on Chiles' free throws with 1:08 remaining.
But Fuller made four free throws in the final minute to spoil the Bears' comeback bid.
Morgan State will play Marist on Monday in a losers' bracket game to wind up its tourney appearance. Vanderbilt will play Loyola-Marymount.