GARLAND, Texas – The #6 seeded Grambling State (GSU) Tigers are headed to the 2011 Southwestern Athletic Conference Men’s Basketball Tournament Championship game after knocking off the #2 seeded Jackson State Tigers, 81-75 in OT in a game that will be remembered for years to come.
This is the second year in a row the G-Men have knocked off the Tigers in the SWAC Tournament. Last season the JSU fell to Grambling State in the quarterfinal round in Shreveport, Louisiana.
Tyrone Hanson scored 13 points for JSU and Davon Jones came off the bench to score 10. Grant Maxey connected on 16 of 19 free throw attempts in 36 minutes of play. Hanson went 4-11 from the field and Jones connected on 5-8 shot attempts and pulled down six rebounds in 14 minutes.
Donald Qualls led GSU to victory, scoring 35 points in 45 minutes of play. Lance Feurtado scored 18 points for GSU. Qualls went 7-13 from three-point range and made 14-15 free throw attempts. Feurtado went 5-12 from the field and made 7-12 free throw attempts.
The overtime period was a battle between Maxey and Qualls, with each player trying to out-duel the other for the right to face the winner of the Texas Southern/Alabama State game on Saturday, Mar. 12.
Maxey scored nine points, making clutch jumpers and free throws and Qualls scored 12 as he made huge three-pointers and key free throws. Qualls secured the win for Grambling when he made two free throws with one second remaining in the game.
For the game Jackson State shot 41.1% from the field (23-56), 10% from three-point range (1-10) and 75.7% from the free throw line (28-37). GSU connected on 40.7% of its field goal attempts (22-54), 40% in threes (8-20) and 70.7% from the line. Jackson State held the edge in rebounding (39-37).
JSU also held the edge in points in the paint (30-18), second chance points (21-15) and bench scoring (24-12).
Jackson State trailed by as much as five points early in the game. At the 19:59 mark in the first half Feurtado hit a jumper to give GSU a 14-9 advantage. Over the next eight minutes the Tigers went on an 8-1 run to take a 17-15 lead. The JSU Tigers increased their lead to seven points by the 3:15 mark and took a 10 point lead into halftime.
Jackson State led 35-25 at halftime. The Tigers shot 53.8% (14-26) from the field. Grambling shot 36.4% (8-22) from the field. Jackson State scored 18 points in the paint and had seven second chance points. GSU scored eight points in the pain and five second chance points.
Maxey led all scorers in the first half with 10 points and four rebounds. Hanson followed with seven points. Feurtado led GSU with eight points.
GSU began chipping away at JSU’s lead over the first minutes of the second half. By the 15:52 mark in the second GSU cut Jackson State’s lead to 37-31. Behind the play of Maxey Jackson State battled to stay ahead. Maxey made two free throws at the 12:05 mark to push JSU’s lead back to seven points. At the 9:04 mark Maxey made a jumper, making the score 51-41.
GSU continued to play hard. At the 4:41 mark in the second half Yondarius Johnson made a layup to cut JSU’s lead to 58-53. With 1:49 remaining in regulation Hanson made to big free throws to keep JSU up 61-57. With 53 seconds remaining in regulation Hanson once again made a pair of free throws, making the score 63-57. On the ensuing possession Qualls hit a three to cut JSU’s lead down to three points.
GSU continued to foul JSU, putting the Tigers at the free throw line. With 24 seconds remaining in regulation Hanson made two free throws, making the score 66-63. With one second left in the game Feurtado made a free throw and missed the second on purpose and Johnson got the rebound and made the put-back basket with .8 of a second remaining on the clock, sending the game into overtime.
GSU outscored JSU 15-9 in OT and made nine of 12 free throws in the extra period. Maxey scored all nine points for the JSU Tigers.