for this game

Middle Tennessee holds off New Orleans 63-58

Jan 1, 2010 - 12:40 AM NEW ORLEANS(AP) -- Desmond Yates scored 18 points and Middle Tennessee led the entire second half to defeat New Orleans 63-58 on Thursday.

The Blue Raiders (6-6, 1-0 Sun Belt Conference) improved to 1-4 on the road and sent the Privateers (5-9, 0-3) to their school-record seventh consecutive defeat.

New Orleans cut Middle Tennessee's lead to 59-57 on Johann Mpondo's layup with 2:47 left and to 59-58 on Ejike Hart's free throw with 57 seconds remaining. Yates retaliated with a jumper for a 61-58 advantage and the Privateers didn't score again.

New Orleans led 26-19 with 6:21 left in the first half before the Blue Raiders went on an 18-2 run for a 37-28 halftime advantage.

J.T. Sulton scored 12 points, James Gallman had 11 and James Washington finished with 10 points for Middle Tennessee.

Mpondo scored 15 and Carl Blair and Billy Humphrey scored 14 points each for New Orleans.