KNOXVILLE, TENN — KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- Chuck Lightening did his job on one end of the court. He curtailed the scoring of Tennessee All-America candidate Allan Houston.
But Lightening and Towson State paid a price for stopping Houston, said Tigers coach Terry Truax.
Towson lost to Tennessee, 77-70, last night, as Lightening scored just six points, 12 points under his season average. The 6-foot-5 senior made two of 11 shots from the field and was little help to teammate Terrance Jacobs, who tied his career high with 29 points.
"Chuck's offense was retarded a little bit because he was working so hard on Allan Houston," Truax said. "I also think he forced a few things on offense and was relying too much on perimeter shots."
Towson State fell to 3-8. Tennessee (8-3) won its seventh straight game.
Houston came into the game averaging 22 points a game and shooting 50.5 percent from the field. But Lightening pushed the Vols' leading scorer farther out on the court, forcing him into 25-foot jump shots. Houston made just five of 13 field-goal attempts.
"That's all I heard about from the guys on the team, Houston, Houston, Houston," Lightening said. "I worked hard on defense, but I didn't do anything on offense. It was frustrating. I'm a senior and I didn't contribute. I got in a funk."
Jacobs tried to pick up the slack. The 6-foot-3 senior made 11 of 18 shots and grabbed 11 rebounds.
"I got relaxed in the shoot around during practice this afternoon," Jacobs said. I also didn't worry about us playing a big-time SEC school. It was just another ballgame to me."
Jacobs got the Tigers off to a good start, scoring 13 points in the first ten minutes of the game. Towson State had a 22-18 lead with 9:17 remaining in the first half when Jacobs hit a 3-point shot from the right wing.
But the Tigers didn't have a remedy for Tennessee's superiority inside. With Houston struggling, the Vols just went inside to forwards Carlus Groves and Corey Allen, who combined for 34 points.