MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Despite Brandon Battle pulling down ten rebounds and narrowly missing a double-double, Alabama State fell to Grambling State in their season, and Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC), opener 66-49 Saturday night at the Dunn-Oliver Acadome.
Alabama State (0-1, 0-1 SWAC) grabbed an early lead in the opening minutes of the game on a layup from Kenny Strawbridge, before Grambling State (3-5, 1-0 SWAC) went on an 8-2 run to grab a 10-6 lead with 16:37 to play in the opening half. The Hornets were able to keep within a basket until another mini-run by Grambling State to grab a 17-10 lead with 13:57 to play in the contest.
The Hornets came back to pull within three at 19-16 on a Jordan Cousin jumper with 9:42 to play in the opening half, however, Grambling State pulled away for a 35-20 lead at halftime. The second was much the same as the Tigers had an answer for every run from Alabama State to pull away for the win.
DJ Heath and Strawbridge each finished with nine points for the Hornets, with Heath dishing out three assists in the loss. E.J. Clark finished with eight points, while Battle finished with six points to go along with his double-digit rebounding performance. Meanwhile, Jordan O’Neal finished with four blocks and seven rebounds for Alabama State which finished the night shooting 30.5 (18-for-59) percent from the floor. They also shot just 10.0 (2-for-20) percent from beyond the arc and 61.1 (11-for-18) percent from the free throw line.
Meanwhile, Cameron Christon led all scorers with 24 points for Grambling State, while adding eight rebounds. Cameron Woodall added 12 for the Tigers who finished the night shooting 42.4 (25-for-59) percent from the floor. They also finished the night shooting 43.8 (7-of-16) percent from the floor and 75.0 (9-of-12) percent from the free throw line.
Alabama State won the rebounding battle 43-42.
The Hornets return to action Monday night against Jackson State at home, with tip set for 8 pm. The game will be televised nationally by ESPNU.
Courtesy: Alabama State Athletics