KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Kevin Punter scored 23 points and capped a critical 9-0 run with a 3-point play Tuesday as Tennessee rallied to beat Tennessee State 74-69 despite trailing for most of the second half.
Tennessee (7-5) trailed by as many seven points in the second half before Armani Moore put the Volunteers ahead for good 67-66 on a putback of Punter's missed 3-point attempt with 2:26 remaining. Detrick Mostella's basket and Punter's 3-point play extended the lead to 72-66.
Wayne Martin, who scored 19 points, got Tennessee State (9-4) within 72-69 on a 3-point play with 49 seconds left. Punter clinched the victory by sinking two free throws with 15 seconds remaining.
This marked the second straight game in which Tennessee needed a late run to beat an in-state opponent. The Vols beat East Tennessee State 76-67 on Dec. 22 by scoring the game's final nine points.