ATLANTA-With a goal of raising money for hurricane relief, Georgia State earned a 65-58 exhibition win over Georgia Tech at McCamish Pavilion on Saturday afternoon in the ‘A-Town Showdown for Hurricane Relief.’

Sophomore D’Marcus Simonds led the Panthers with 30 points on 11-of-19 shooting, pulling down five rebounds in the win.

In a game that came together just over a week ago, all proceeds from the event will go toward the hurricane relief efforts from three storms that battered multiple areas of the country and Puerto Rico over the last few months.

Junior Malik Benlevi added 13 points and seven rebounds, while junior Jeff Thomas scored 12 and also grabbed seven rebounds.

Ben Lammers led Georgia Tech with 14 points and nine rebounds, while Tadric Jackson scored 13.

“I really want to thank Georgia Tech and their administration for helping pull this together in such a short period of time,” head coach Ron Hunter said. “I’m really happy for our basketball team. We are an experienced group and I feel like we played that way today.”

Despite shooting just 39.0 percent for the game, Georgia State held the Yellow Jackets to just 3-of-25 shooting from 3-point range and forced 14 turnovers.

After trailing 4-2, Georgia State used a 9-0 run to lead 11-4 with 14:05 remaining in the first half. Simonds scored the first 11 points for the Panthers before Benlevi knocked down a 3-pointer with 12:33 to play. On the other end, the Panthers held the Yellow Jackets without a field goal for the first 6:39 of the opening half.

A 3-pointer by Thomas with 7:51 remaining gave Georgia State a 25-14 lead, its largest of the first half.

Georgia Tech used an 8-0 run late in the half to cut the Panthers lead to just 29-27 with 2:54 to play. Lammers led the Yellow Jackets with 12 first-half points, including the final four of the half.

Georgia State went into halftime leading 36-31 but would push the lead back to double figures for most of the second half.

Leading 36-33, the Panthers used an 8-0 run, capped by a Thomas jumper to lead 44-33 with 14:46 to play. A free throw by freshman Kane Williams later in the half gave Georgia State a 50-38 lead, its biggest of the game.

Redshirt-sophomore Jordan Tyson, playing in his first game as a Panther, grabbed seven rebounds in just 13 minutes of action.

Georgia State will return to the court on Thursday facing Lees-McRae College in the second of three exhibition games. Tip is set for 7 p.m. from the GSU Sports Arena.


  • Georgia State improved to 12-0 in exhibition games under head coach Ron Hunter.
  • The win by the Panthers marked the first over Georgia Tech since 1976.
  • A crowd of more than 2,100 witnessed the game.