National Basketball Association
Texas Southern 64, North Carolina Central 46
When: 6:40 PM ET, Wednesday, March 14, 2018
Where: University of Dayton Arena, Dayton, Ohio
Officials: # Tim Nestor, # Chuck Jones, # Rob Kueneman, # Matt Potter
Attendance: N/A
Damontrae Jefferson scored a game-high 25 points Wednesday night, and Texas Southern choked off North Carolina Central's offense for a 64-46 victory in an NCAA Tournament First Four game at UD Arena in Dayton, Ohio.

The result sends the Tigers (16-19) to Nashville, Tenn., on Friday night for a first-round game with Xavier, the top seed in the West Region. It was the first-ever NCAA Tournament win for Texas Southern in eight tries.

"I know a lot of teams didn't make it this far," Jefferson said of the chance to play the Musketeers, "so it's a blessing to be able to continue our season."

The 5-foot-7 Jefferson also hauled in eight rebounds for the Tigers, who are 16-6 after an 0-13 start. Donte Clark added 18 points and seven rebounds while 7-foot-2 center Trayvon Reed chipped in 10 points, eight rebounds and six blocked shots.

Center Raasean Davis scored 19 points and grabbed 11 rebounds for the Eagles (19-16), but he got no help from his teammates. While Davis made 9 of 11 shots from the floor, everyone else for North Carolina Central combined to hit 12 of 58 (20.7 percent). The Eagles missed all 14 of their 3-point attempts.

North Carolina Central actually got off to a decent start, leading 10-6 at the 13:44 mark of the first half when Davis converted a jumper. However, Texas Southern rattled off eight consecutive points for a 14-10 advantage on Jefferson's layup with 10:29 left, and the Tigers never trailed again.

Clark expanded the lead to 32-20 with 3:40 remaining on two foul shots, and only a jumper by Davis with 13 seconds left enabled the Eagles to trail by just 36-26 at halftime.

The Tigers owned a double-figure lead for the final 15:02 of the game, even though they endured a scoring drought of 5:37 after a Jefferson 3-pointer upped their advantage to 54-34 with 11:29 left. Texas Southern led by as many as 24 points in the final three minutes.

The Tigers cruised despite canning just 36.8 percent of their field-goal attempts.

--Field Level Media

Top Game Performances
Texas Southern   North Carolina Central
Demontrae Jefferson 25 Scoring Raasean Davis 19
Demontrae Jefferson 3 Assists Jordan Perkins 6
Demontrae Jefferson 8 Rebounds Pablo Rivas 12
Donte Clark 7 Free Throws Made Raasean Davis 1
Demontrae Jefferson 3 Steals Jordan Perkins 3
Trayvon Reed 6 Blocks Raasean Davis 2
Team Stats Summary
Team Points FG% 3PM-3PA FTM-FTA Assists Rebounds Blocks Steals Turnovers
Texas Southern 64 36.8 6-24 16-19 9 38 8 7 14
North Carolina Central 46 30.4 0-14 4-6 10 39 2 5 15