DAYTON, Ohio — Obi Toppin saw his younger brother, Jacob, going up for a shot. Dayton’s fabulous forward stretch out his long arm and swatted it away.
“I wasn’t going to let little brother score on me,” Toppin said. “I can’t let that happen.”
He and the Flyers had things well in hand in a match-up of the Atlantic 10’s top teams.
Toppin scored 22 points and led an opening 17-point spurt Tuesday night as No. 6 Dayton surged to an 81-67 victory over Rhode Island, dominating a reunion of the Toppin brothers.
Both teams brought double-digit winning streaks into a chippy game that included seven technical fouls. Dayton (22-2, 11-0) got the better of it in every way, winning its 13th in a row.
“We knew they were No. 2 in the conference and we had to put a stamp on what we have going on,” Toppin said.
Toppin had a double-double with 10 rebounds. Jalen Crutcher scored 21 points, and Trey Landers matched his career high with 14 rebounds.
Fatts Russell had 19 points for Rhode Island (18-6, 10-2), which had a 10-game winning streak snapped.
n No. 9 Maryland 72,
COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Jalen Smith had 16 points and 13 rebounds, Eric Ayala scored 16, and Maryland edged Nebraska to extend its winning streak to seven games, and remain alone atop the Big Ten.
After the Terrapins (20-4, 10-3) let a 14-point lead dwindle to 71-70, Smith blocked a shot in the waning seconds and made a free throw on the other end to clinch it.
Donta Scott had 10 points and 10 rebounds for Maryland, and Anthony Cowan Jr. totaled 13 points and 10 assists. It was the first time since 2001 that three Terps registered double-doubles in the same game.
It was the seventh straight double-double for Smith, and the Terps needed him on both ends to improve to 14-0 at home.
Haanif Cheatham scored 20, and Thorir Thorbjarnarson added 15 for Nebraska (7-17, 2-11), which has lost nine straight and is 0-9 on the road. The Cornhuskers got back into the game by going 13 for 20 in the opening 13 minutes of the second half.
n No. 12 Kentucky 78,
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Kentucky coach John Calipari watched his Wildcats fall behind by as many as 14 points in the first half, and enter the locker room down with their biggest deficit of the season on the road at Vanderbilt.
No yelling. No tirade. Calipari only told his Wildcats to start throwing the ball inside to Nick Richards.
Tyrese Maxey scored 25 points, and Kentucky rallied from its biggest halftime deficit this season to beat Vanderbilt.
“The whole point of this is them learning about themselves,” Calipari said. “And I said, ‘They made eight 3s guys, and you missed five 1-foot shots. This is going to be what the score is.’”
Ashton Hagans backed up his coach.
“He was real calm,” Hagans said of Calipari. “He wanted us to work it out altogether and talk on it. You know, we came out there and just we were the aggressor in the second half and we were just trying to get the win.”
The Wildcats (19-5, 9-2) did that to keep a piece of the lead atop the Southeastern Conference standings with Auburn and LSU. The Wildcats also won their eighth straight over Vanderbilt, though this was the fifth time in this streak that they’ve had to rally from a double-digit deficit after clawing back to a 36-27 deficit at halftime.
Immanuel Quickley also had 18 points, Nick Richards had 12 and Hagans finished with 11 points and 10 rebounds in Calipari’s 400th career game at Kentucky.
Vanderbilt (9-15, 1-10) was looking to make Kentucky the second straight ranked team to come into Memorial Gym and lose within the past week after the Commodores upset then-No. 18 LSU.