Bruce helps Texas Southern win home opener

HOUSTON (AP) — Derrick Bruce came off the bench to score a season-high 21 points and Texas Southern held off NAIA-member Huston-Tillotson in its home opener on Thursday night.

Bruce sank 6 of 10 shots from the floor, including 3 of 5 from 3-point range, and added three steals for the Tigers (3-4). Texas Southern, under first-year coach Johnny Johnson, opened its season with a six-game road trip that including a win on Baylor’s home floor, snapping the Bears’ 56-game winning streak against teams from the Southwest Athletic Conference. The Tigers concluded their trip with an 89-84 victory over Oregon — ranked 18th at the time.

Jeremy Combs scored 18 on 6-of-8 shooting for the Tigers. Trayvon Reed added 14 points and seven rebounds and Justin Hopkins pitched in with 11 points and eight boards.

The Rams, who trailed 42-37 at halftime, grabbed a 62-57 lead on a 3-pointer by Isaiah Wilson with 12:42 left to play. Huston-Tillotson led 76-71 on a Christian Wilson layup with 2:06 to go, but Reed had a dunk, Bruce nailed a 3-pointer and Texas Southern hit 4 of 5 free throws in the final 40 seconds to hold on.

Christian Wilson paced the Rams with 23 points and 14 rebounds, but he had nine of Huston-Tillotson’s 21 turnovers. Alex Doche had 13 points and Isaiah Wilson scored 12.