RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Dion Waiters scored a career-high 22 points to help No. 1 Syracuse beat North Carolina State 88-72 on Saturday.
Scoop Jardine added 16 points for the Orange (11-0), including a pair of 3-pointers during an 11-2 spurt that finally gave them some cushion after the Wolfpack fought back from a 17-point deficit late in the first half.
Waiters also came up big during that run, starting it by knocking down his own 3-pointer to answer one by Scott Wood that pulled N.C. State (6-4) to within 63-61.
Waiters also jumped a pass and raced in for a dunk, then Jardine closed the spurt with another 3 to push the lead to 74-63 with 6:41 left.
It was a good road test for Syracuse, which was playing for the first time this season as the nation’s No. 1 team — as well as its first game outside its home state.
NO. 2 OHIO STATE 74,
SOUTH CAROLINA 66
COLUMBIA, S.C. — Deshaun Thomas scored a career-high 30 points and Ohio State overcame the loss of star Jared Sullinger to give Thad Matta his 200th win as Buckeyes coach.
Sullinger left in the first half after getting kicked in the left foot. X-rays showed no fracture, although it wasn’t known if Sullinger would play against Lamar on Tuesday night.
Even if he can’t, Thomas showed he’s more than ready to lead Ohio State (10-1). The 6-foot-7 sophomore hit 13 of 16 shots and surpassed his previous high of 24 points set last season against North Carolina A&T. William Buford added 17 points for Ohio State.
Malik Cooke led South Carolina (4-6) with 21 points.
NO. 3 KENTUCKY 87,
LEXINGTON, Ky. — Doron Lamb scored 24 points to help Kentucky bounce back from its first loss of the season despite an injury to forward Terrence Jones.
Voted preseason All-America, Jones spent much of the game on the bench after hurting a finger on his left hand early in the first half. He checked back in but played only 10 minutes. He finished with no points and one rebound.
Still, the Wildcats (9-1) opened with 13 unanswered points in their first game since a 73-72 defeat at Indiana last Saturday knocked them from the nation’s top ranking.
Drazen Zlovaric scored 15 points for the Mocs (3-8).
NO. 4 LOUISVILLE 95,
LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Russ Smith set personal bests with 24 points and seven steals as Louisville extended its home winning streak to 18 games.
Gorgui Dieng added 14 points and 14 rebounds in the schools’ first meeting since the Cardinals (10-0) beat the Tigers (5-4) by a point to win the Conference USA tournament in 2005 before departing for the Big East.
Will Barton set career highs with 28 points and 16 rebounds for Memphis.
Louisville is off to its best start since the 1996-97 season and on its longest winning streak at home in 22 years.
NO. 5 NORTH CAROLINA 97,
APPALACHIAN STATE 82
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — Tyler Zeller had 31 points and 10 rebounds, and John Henson added 17 points to lead North Carolina.
The Tar Heels (9-2) never trailed, led by 29 and shot 54.5 percent to claim their third straight win and 22nd in a row at the Dean Smith Center.
Omar Carter had 21 points and Mike Neal scored 15 for the Mountaineers (4-6). They finished 9 of 20 from 3-point range and used a late scoring flurry to cut into North Carolina’s big lead, but lost their fourth straight. Second-year Appalachian State coach Jason Capel lost his first matchup against his alma mater. He started for the Tar Heels from 1998-2002.
NO. 6 BAYLOR 86, BYU 83
PROVO, Utah — Perry Jones III scored a career-high 28 points and Brady Heslip hit six 3-pointers and had 18 points for Baylor.
Brandon Davies had a chance to force overtime but his 3-point attempt at the buzzer was blocked by 5-foot-10 Pierre Jackson. Davies had 18 points, 13 rebounds, a block and a steal for the Cougars.
The Bears are off to the third 9-0 start in school history and best under coach Scott Drew. The Cougars absorbed their second nonconference loss in their last 50 home games.
Freshman guard Matt Carlino scored 18 points in his debut for BYU (8-3).
NO. 11 MARQUETTE 93,
NORTHERN COLORADO 72
MILWAUKEE — Freshman Todd Mayo replaced suspended star Darius Johnson-Odom in the starting lineup and scored 22 points to lead Marquette.
Jae Crowder added 19 points and 11 rebounds for Marquette (10-0), which moved to 10-0 for the first time in a decade and seventh time in school history. Vander Blue had 18 points
Tate Unruh had a career-high 25 points for Northern Colorado (3-7), the defending Big Sky Conference regular-season and tournament champions. Unruh made five 3-pointers.
Johnson-Odom, who is averaging 18.8 points, 3.3 assists and 3.2 points, was suspended for an unspecified violation of team rules. The senior guard will return Monday at LSU.
NO. 13 FLORIDA 84,
NO. 22 TEXAS A&M 64
SUNRISE, Fla. — Kenny Boynton sank six 3-pointers and scored 22 points for Florida, which built an early 16-point lead and coasted from there.
Boynton was voted the game’s most valuable player at the Orange Bowl Classic. Erving Walker had 16 points and six assists, and Bradley Beal added 16 points for Florida.
The Gators (8-2) won for the first time in three games this season against teams that are in the Top 25. Texas A&M (8-2) had a six-game winning streak snapped.
David Loubeau and Elston Turner each scored 20 points for the turnover-plagued Aggies, who went 8 minutes at the start before making their first basket.
NO. 15 PITTSBURGH 69,
SOUTH CAROLINA STATE 55
PITTSBURGH — Lamar Patterson tied a career high with 16 points and Pittsburgh pulled away in the second half for the victory.
Ashton Gibbs added 14 points and a team-high six assists for the Panthers (10-1), who have won eight straight.
Brandon Riley led the Bulldogs (4-7) with 21 points and Khalif Toombs added 16 while making all four of his 3-point attempts, but South Carolina State wore down in the second half.
Riley hit a jumper to pull South Carolina State within one before Pitt responded with a 13-3 run to build a 48-37 lead.
NO. 16 GEORGETOWN 81, AMERICAN 55
WASHINGTON — Georgetown center Henry Sims took over the game early in the second half, finishing with 17 points and six assists, and Markel Starks scored 18 for the Hoyas.
Sims assisted on back-door baskets on four consecutive possessions in the opening minutes after halftime as Georgetown (9-1) broke open a tight game for its seventh straight win.
Charles Hinkle scored 16 for American (8-4), which has followed an eight-game winning streak with two straight losses.
Hollis Thompson added 15 points and eight rebounds for Georgetown, which made 59 percent of its field-goal attempts, while holding American to 41 percent.
NO. 17 MISSISSIPPI ST. 80, DETROIT 75
DETROIT — Rodney Hood hit a jumper with 17.7 seconds left to lift Mississippi State to its 10th straight victory.
Hood’s shot broke a 75-all tie and Arnett Moultrie blocked a shot seconds later to keep the Bulldogs (11-1) ahead.
Moultrie and Brian Bryant each scored 17 points, and Renardo Sidney added 16 as Mississippi State earned the 1,300th win in school history.
Chase Simon and Ray McCallum both scored 17 points for the Titans (5-8), who rallied to tie it after trailing by as many as 15 points. Detroit lost its second straight game.
NO. 18 INDIANA 69, NOTRE DAME 58
INDIANAPOLIS — Cody Zeller had 21 points and eight rebounds to lead Indiana in the inaugural Crossroads Classic at Conseco Fieldhouse.
The Hoosiers are 10-0 for the first time since 1989-90, protected their first Top 25 ranking in more than three years and are now poised to make their 500th appearance in the next AP poll.
Eric Atkins scored 15 points and Jeran Grant added 14 for Notre Dame (7-5).
The Irish managed only one 2-point basket in the first half, failed to make a field goal over the final 14:33 of the half and didn’t hit another 3 until Grant knocked one down with 1:39 left in the game.
UNLV 64, NO. 19 ILLINOIS 48
CHICAGO — Mike Moser had 17 points and 11 rebounds, UNLV went on a 14-2 run to close the first half and the Runnin’ Rebels handed Illinois its first loss of the season.
UNLV (11-2), which beat then-No. 1 North Carolina earlier this season, used its quick, switching defense and nine blocked shots to frustrate the Illini.
Quintrell Thomas added 13 points for UNLV, which won despite getting only two points from leading scorer Chace Stanback.
The cold-shooting Illini (10-1) were led by D.J. Richardson with 19 points. Illinois shot 25.4 percent (16 for 63) and had 15 turnovers. The Illini went 7 of 25 from 3-point range.
NO. 20 MICHIGAN 87, ALABAMA A&M 57
ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Evan Smotrycz had 17 points and 11 rebounds for Michigan, which shot 63 percent from the field in the second half.
Trey Burke led the Wolverines (9-2) with 19 points, and Zack Novak and Tim Hardaway Jr. contributed 13 each.
Casey Canty scored 15 points for the Bulldogs (2-4). Alabama A&M was playing its first game since Dec. 3 because of a break for finals.
It was Michigan’s second consecutive game against a Southwestern Athletic Conference opponent. The Wolverines beat Arkansas-Pine Bluff 63-50 on Tuesday.
NO. 21 MICHIGAN STATE 74, BOWLING GREEN 60
EAST LANSING, Mich. — Brandon Wood scored 16 points and to help Michigan State overcome a sluggish first half.
Derrick Nix added a career-high 14 points to go with seven rebounds, and Branden Dawson had 13 points for the Spartans (9-2), who have won nine straight. Draymond Green had his fifth double-double this season with 12 points and 10 rebounds.
Jehvon Clarke had 14 points, A’uston Calhoun 12 and Jordon Crawford 11 for the Falcons (5-5), who outplayed Michigan State for much of the first half before trailing 35-33 at the break.
Bowling Green was the first visiting team to win in Breslin Center in December 1989.
NO. 24 MURRAY ST. 66, ARKANSAS ST. 53
MURRAY, Ky. — Isaiah Canaan hit six 3-pointers and scored 21 points to lead Murray State, which is off to its best start since the 1950-51 season.
Ivan Aska added 14 points and 11 rebounds, and Donte Poole had 11 points for the Racers (12-0). Canaan had five 3-pointers in the first half for Murray State, which went 8 of 19 from beyond the arc to help offset 15 turnovers.
The Red Wolves (5-6) led for the first 15 minutes before Murray State pulled away for a 41-30 lead early in the second half. The Racers led 35-30 at the break.
Ed Townsel led the Red Wolves with 17 points and Adam Sterrenberg added 10.
NO. 25 CREIGHTON 97, HOUSTON BAPTIST 62
OMAHA, Neb. — Doug McDermott scored 25 points, and Gregory Echenique had 18 points and 14 rebounds to lead Creighton.
McDermott, who came in as the nation’s No. 2 scorer at 24 points a game, had his eighth straight 20-point game for the Bluejays (8-1).
The Huskies (4-7) had no answer for the 6-foot-9, 270-pound Echenique, who needed only 15 minutes to record his first double-double of the season. Echenique also blocked five shots and threw down several big dunks.
Art Bernardi and reserve Anthony Hill each had 16 points to lead Houston Baptist.
INDIANA STATE 61, NO. 25 VANDERBILT 55
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Steve McWhorter hit two free throws with 3:32 left to give Indiana State its first win over a ranked team since 2006.
Indiana State (8-2) is off to its best start since opening 8-1 in 2005-06. The Sycamores’ last win over a ranked team came on their own court against No. 14 Butler on Dec. 12, 2006.
Reserve RJ Mahurin had a career-high 14 points, and Carl Richard and Jordan Printy each finished with 11. Jake Odum added 10 for the Sycamores.
John Jenkins, the SEC’s leading scorer last season who is averaging a league-best 21.3 points this season, was held to 11 for Vanderbilt (6-4).