KENT, Ohio (AP) Kellon Thomas and Xavier Pollard had 16 points apiece and Kent State beat Louisiana-Monroe 73-62 in the first sub-regional night of the Continental Tire Las Vegas Classic on Thursday.
Jaylin Walker added 11 points for the Golden Flashes (6-2), who led by no more than six until they pulled away late with an 8-0 run. Deon Edwin's dunk near the end of the run gave them their first double-digit lead and Pollard capped it at 62-50 with 1 of 2 free throws and 3:39 left.
Kent State made 7 of 8 free throws from there and the Warhawks (4-3) got no closer than 68-59 on Jamaal Samuel's 3-pointer with 1:42 left.
Samuel had 18 points for Louisiana-Monroe, which was without head coach Keith Richard (illness) and leading scorer Majok Deng due to a lower leg injury. Nick Coppola added 15 points and DeMondre Harvey scored 10.
Deng, who averaged 18.3 points and 7.3 rebounds this season, sustained the injury earlier in the week and has no timetable for his return.