MEMPHIS, Tenn. (Feb. 4, 2014) – Despite shooting 53.1 percent (50.0 percent from beyond the arc) in the second half, Rutgers (9-14, 3-7) fell to No. 24 Memphis (17-5, 7-3), 101-69, at FedEx Forum on Tuesday night.
Junior forward Kadeem Jack (Queens, N.Y.) led the Scarlet Knights 12 points on 5-of-11 shooting. He was also tied for a team-high six rebounds. Redshirt sophomore forward Greg Lewis (Baltimore, Md.) matched Jack with a career-high six rebounds, while also posting a personal-best eight points. Rutgers held a 13-11 advantage in the offensive rebounding department.
“I told our guys at halftime, it’s a lesson," said Rutgers head coach Eddie Jordan. "We’re being taught a lesson here. You’ve got to get ready to play. They’re a physical brand of basketball, very good team, expertise at the three and in the paint. They’re bigger than we are. They’re tougher and they’re better. I told our guys at halftime that it doesn’t mean we can’t win the game just because they’re better, but you have to play a very good game, and we didn’t do that. This team is very physical; they almost shocked us with their physicality.”
The Scarlet Knights fell behind early, as the Tigers went on a 22-3 run to start the game. RU’s lone points in that span came from Jack, who drained a jumper and sunk a free throw.
The run extended to the 12:31 mark in the first, before Jack drained another baseline jumper to make the score 22-5. Memphis answered, scoring the next nine points to give it a 31-5 advantage with 9:51 remaining in the opening half.
Jack again ended the burst, draining another jumper before junior guard D’Von Campbell (Arlington, Texas) sunk two free throws to make the score 31-9 with 9:11 to go in the first.
The Tigers scored the next six, going up 37-9, before an RU timeout at the 8:31 mark. A Jack free throw and a floater in the paint from junior guard Craig Brown (Miami, Fla.) trimmed Memphis’ advantage to 37-12 at 7:50. That would be as close as the Scarlet Knights would get, as the Tigers took a 56-21 lead into halftime.
Coming out of the break, Rutgers went on a 9-2 run that included two 3-pointers from junior guard Jerome Seagears (Silver Spring, Md.), to cut the lead to 58-30 with 17:29 to go. The Scarlet Knights would not get any closer, as the Tigers picked up the victory.
Rutgers next travels to Tampa, Fla., to take on USF Saturday, Feb. 8 at 8 p.m. The game will be broadcast live on ESPNews.
Junior forward Kadeem Jack scored a team-high 12 points, his 19th double-digit scoring game this season and 24th of his career.
Redshirt sophomore Greg Lewis scored a career-high eight points. His previous best was six, which he did three times, most recently at Temple (Jan. 29, 2014).
Lewis set a career high with four made field goals. His previous best was three, which he did twice, most recently at Temple (Jan. 29, 2014).
Lewis set a new personal best with six rebounds. His previous best was four, which he did three times, most recently vs. UCF (Jan. 15, 2014).
With nine points in the game, junior guard Myles Mack moved into 30th on RU’s career scoring list with 1,099 points. He passed Anthony Farmer (2005-09), who had 1,092 points and Steve Worthy (1991-93), who had 1,095 points. He is now six points behind No. 29 Rashod Kent (1998-02).
With two steals, Mack moved into a tie for eighth place on RU’s career steals list. He now has 142, matching Darius Griffin (1978-82).
Redshirt sophomore Stephen Zurich tied his career high with one rebound. He has done it four other times.
Eddie Jordan went with the starting lineup of forward Junior Etou, forward Kadeem Jack, guard Myles Mack, guard J.J. Moore and guard Jerome Seagears for the second time this season.