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Vanderbilt turns on gas, beats South Carolina State 97-60

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That was fun.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: NOV 20 Austin Peay at Vanderbilt Photo by Matthew Maxey/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Things started slowly for Vanderbilt on Friday night, as the Commodores led 21-17 about midway through the first half against the South Carolina State Bulldogs. But a 20-3 run over seven minutes gave Vanderbilt a considerable cushion, and the Commodores went into halftime leading 47-26. At halftime, Clevon Brown already had 13 points, with Aaron Nesmith scoring 12 and Dylan Disu 10.

South Carolina State would make things at least sort of interesting to open the second half, though, opening the second frame on a 16-5 run that cut the Vanderbilt lead to 10. (In a marked change from the Bryce Drew era, Jerry Stackhouse did not take a time out at any point during this stretch.) The Bulldogs wouldn’t get closer than that, but hung around for a bit before Vanderbilt stepped on the gas midway through the second half. Vanderbilt outscored South Carolina State 36-10 over the game’s final 10:05 to take a 97-60 win, capped off by walk-on Trace Arbuckle scoring his first points in a Vanderbilt uniform.

For the game, six Commodores scored in double figures led by Aaron Nesmith’s 20; Clevon Brown set a new career high with 19. Dylan Disu had his first career double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds, and Scotty Pippen Jr. had eight assists. Vanderbilt will play Southeastern Louisiana on Monday night.