TULSA, Okla. (AP)—Brett McDade scored a season-high 16 points, Rod Earls added 15 and Tulsa held off a second-half rally to beat Charlotte 75-63 Tuesday night.
Jerome Jordan had back-to-back baskets and then set up a 3-pointer by Earls as Tulsa shot out of halftime with a 9-0 run and extended its lead to 38-21.
The 6-foot-11 sophomore center then got another nine-point spurt going when he spun from the right block and dunked over two defenders. Ben Uzoh finished that run off with a right-handed jam on a fast break to make it 52-28, and he drew a technical foul for hanging on the rim.
A full-court press and an off night by Conference USA’s top foul shooting team allowed Charlotte (6-4) to cut into the deficit, and Michael Gerrity’s layup with 37.5 seconds left got the 49ers within 70-63.
Bishop Wheatley hit two free throws to steady Tulsa (5-4), and McDade’s three-point play sealed a 3-0 start to the Golden Hurricane’s five-game homestand.
Ian Andersen hit five 3-pointers in the second half rally and ended up with a career-high 17 points for Charlotte, which went 0-2 on its first road trip of the season.
Charles Coley III added 12 points while Leemire Goldwire, the Atlantic 10’s second-leading scorer with a 21.4-point average, was held to a season-low 10 points, with two of those coming on the foul shots after Uzoh’s technical. Goldwire had averaged 28 points in his three previous games.
Jordan and Uzoh each scored 11 for Tulsa, and Wheatley tied a career-high with 10 points. Calvin Walls added 11 rebounds and five blocks.
Tulsa ended up 17-for-29 (58.6 percent) from the foul line, well below its 76.6 percent mark for the season, but made up for it with its second straight strong performance from the field.
After shooting above 50 percent only once in its first seven games, the Golden Hurricane cleared that mark for the second straight game by going 26-for-51.