Troy, Ala.--Georgia State overcame a 14-point halftime deficit to lead late before falling to Troy, 57-56, on a free throw with 33.9 seconds left Saturday night at the Trojan Arena.
The Panthers (5-5) took a 56-51 lead on Devonta White’s layup with 1:47 left. Troy answered with a three-point play by Antoine Myers with 1:16 to play to pull within two. The Trojans then came up with a steal in the backcourt, and Hunter Williams fed Myers for the tying layup with 1:05 left.
With the score tied at 56-56, GSU missed twice from close range before center James Vincent was whistled for a foul on the rebound, and Ray Chambers made one of two free throws to put Troy ahead, 57-56 with 33.9 seconds left.
After a miss by GSU and then a missed free throw by Troy, the Panthers had one final chance when Vincent was fouled with less than a second on the clock, but he could not convert from the free throw line.
“This has kind of been the story all year,” commented head coach Ron Hunter after the loss. “We come out slow and then fight back, but tonight it was too little too late.
“We were just 15-of-23 from the free
throw line and that is not good enough to win. We have not shot well from the
line all season and tonight it proved costly.”
After falling behind 30-16 at the half, GSU still trailed by nine at 42-33 with less than 13 minutes to play. The Panthers reeled off nine straight points to tie the game at 42-all on a three-pointer by R.J. Hunter. The score was still tied at 46-46 with less than seven minutes left when a bucket by White gave the Panthers their first lead since Atkins scored the first bucket of the game.
White led GSU with 13 points, 11 of them in the second half. Atkins added 12 points and nine rebounds, and Vincent contributed 10 points, nine rebounds and three blocked shots, moving into sixth place in GSU history with 87 career blocks.
Chambers paced Troy with 18 points on 8-for-11 shooting and seven rebounds. The Trojans snapped a five-game losing streak to improve to 5-7.
Georgia State fell behind with a frigid first half in which the Panthers managed to shoot just 5-for-21 (24 percent) in the first half. GSU had more turnovers (9) than field goals in the opening half and trailed by as many as 16 points before taking a 14-point deficit into the locker room.
Redshirt-sophomore Cameron Solomon
came off the bench to score nine points in 16 minutes of action.
Georgia State returns home to host Southern Miss Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the GSU Sports Arena. Tickets are available by calling 866-GA-STATe or visiting GeorgiaStateSports.com.