JONESBORO, Arkansas — Melvin Johnson III scored 17 points Thursday night as Arkansas State overcame a poor shooting performance to beat Louisiana-Monroe 64-58.
Kendrick Washington added 12 points and nine rebounds for Arkansas State (18-11, 10-7), which moved into a third-place tie with Louisiana-Lafayette (19-11, 10-7) in the Sun Belt Conference with one game remaining.
The Red Wolves took a 33-20 lead into halftime, but shot just 33 percent (7 of 21) in the second half as Louisiana-Monroe crept back into the game.
After shooting just 37 percent (10-of-27) in the first half, ULM (9-16, 6-11) made seven of its first 13 field goals during a 15-4 run to open the second half to pull within two, 37-35.
Nick Coppola's 3 with 3:59 seconds left tied the game at 47, but Arkansas State answered with a 7-0 run and made 8 of 10 free throws down the stretch to seal the victory.