Martin lives up to billing as No. 18 Arizona State edges URI

Arizona State senior point guard Remy Martin scored 26 points to help the No. 18 Sun Devils hold off the Rhode Island Rams 94-88 on Wednesday night at the 2K Empire Sports Classic in Uncasville, Conn.

Martin, a preseason All-American, also had six rebounds and five assists in the foul-plagued season-opener for both teams.

Arizona State, which squandered a 16-point first-half lead, trailed 72-69 with 11:18 to go. The game stayed within one possession until ASU’s Marcus Bagley made a free throw with 1:08 to go for a 92-88 lead. Holland Woods made a steal and layup in the final minute to finish the scoring.

The Sun Devils advanced to Thursday’s title game of the four-team tournament, where they will meet No. 3 Villanova, a 76-67 winner over Boston College on Wednesday. The Rams will play the Eagles in the consolation game.

Wednesday’s matchup wasn’t set until Monday after Baylor — Arizona State’s original opponent — withdrew because of COVID-19 issues. The game was often sloppy, with the teams combining to commit 55 fouls and 29 turnovers.

Rhode Island junior forward Antwan Walker scored a career-high 19 points, as did guard Jeremy Sheppard, making his URI debut after stops at Eastern Carolina and junior college. Walker scored 16 points in the second half.

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