Louisville pulls away from Southern in 2nd half, wins 72-60

NCAA Basketball

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP)Noah Locke scored 16 points and Louisville opened its 108th season with its 21sts consecutive home-opening win, beating Southern 72-60 on Tuesday night.

The Cardinals were without their coach, Chris Mack, who started serving a 20-day, six-game suspension imposed by the University of Louisville and not the NCAA. Assistant coach Mike Pegues earned the win as acting head coach.

Sydney Curry scored at the basket to give Louisville a 33-25 lead with 2:42 left to play in the first half, but P.J. Byrd hit 3 of 4 from the line and Brion Whitley hit a 3 with 28 seconds left to pull the Jaguars within two, 33-31 at intermission. Tyrone Lyons dunked and Whitley hit another 3 to open the second half to put Southern in front, 36-34.

Locke hit back-to-back 3s to put the Cardinals in front for good, 40-36, and his 3 with 9:11 left pushed the advantage to 13, 56-43.

Reserve Matt Cross finished with 15 points for Louisville, which now has won 59 consecutive home games in November, a streak that spans the last 29 years. Samuell Williamson contributed 14 points and grabbed 14 rebounds off the bench.

Whitley finished with 17 points off the bench to lead Southern. Lyons scored 11 and Jayden Saddler added 10 points.

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