Arizona State (4-2) escaped Princeton (0-5) with a 67-65 win Tuesday thanks to a clutch three-pointer from junior forward Khalid Thomas with 3.2 seconds remaining.
The Sun Devils trailed throughout, falling behind as much as 12 before using a 41-point second half to take down the Tigers.
Junior guard Remy Martin continued his exceptional start to the season, recording a career-high 33 points while playing the entirety of the game’s 40 minutes.
He played one of his more efficient games of the young season, connecting on 13 of 23 shots including 3 of 6 from three-point land. The junior also dished out a team best three assists, a feat both he and forward Romello White accomplished, and swiped two steals in the win.
The story of Tuesday’s win though, was the emergence of Thomas, who finished with 14 points on 5 of 6 shooting in 24 minutes of action.
The College of Southern Idaho transfer was one of the most highly-touted junior college recruits in the country, eventually choosing Arizona State over the University of Arizona, Baylor, and a number of other potential suitors.
The 6-foot-9 forward had yet to get much of an extended look so far this season, but grasped his opportunity on Tuesday with the game-winning shot.
For most of the contest, it didn’t appear the game would ever be close enough to entertain the idea of a game-winning shot. Princeton lead for over 30 minutes of game time, jumping out to a 31-26 first half lead.
ASU struggled to find the bottom of the basket for much of the game’s early minutes, finishing the first half shooting 37 percent (10-27) from the field, including 1 for 5 from three.
The second half though, was a distinctly different story, as the Sun Devils found their groove offensively on the backs of Martin and Thomas. ASU shot an impressive 53.8 percent from the field in the half, including a remarkable 7 of 11 from three.
Thomas’ clutch three-pointer improved ASU to 5-2 on the season as the team finally returns home from an almost two week east coast road trip.
They still don’t host an opponent at home until December 7, first traveling to California on December 3 to face the University of San Francisco.