Grambling defeats Southern 59-40

From Grambling State Sports Information:

GRAMBLING, La. | The Grambling State University men’s basketball team shot over 50 percent in the second half as the Tigers completed a season sweep of rival Southern, 59-40, on Saturday in a Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) game at the F.G. Clark Activity Center.

Grambling State (12-11 overall, 6-4 SWAC) shot nearly 31 percent in the first half, yet trailed Southern, 23-20, at the break. The Tigers turned things up offensively in the second half, shooting almost 55 percent in outscoring the Jaguars, 39-17, to cruise to the victory.

Ivy Smith, Jr. paced Grambling State with a game-high 21 points, along with five rebounds, four steals and three assists. Devante Jackson chipped in 12 points, seven boards and two assists, while Dallas-Polk Hilliard tallied nine points and two rebounds.

Armani McWain was the lone Jaguar player in double figures with 17 points, seven rebounds and one steal.

Turning Point

Despite trailing by three points (23-20) at the break, the Tigers fell behind 27-21 after a Bryan Assie putback with 18:27 remaining.

Grambling State battled back and grabbed a 29-27 lead after an Anthony Gaston jumper with 13:25 remaining. A bucket by Danayea Charles tied the game at 29 with just over 12 minutes remaining.

However, the Tigers kicked things into overdrive and used a 14-3 run, capped by a Dallas Polk-Hilliard free throw to give Grambling State a 43-32 lead with 7:30 left.

Southern never got any closer than nine points during the final seven minutes as Grambling State completed its first sweep over its rival since the 2010-11 season.

Inside the Numbers 
> Grambling State shot 41.7 percent (20-of-48) from the floor and 68.0 percent (17-of-25) from the charity stripe
> Southern was 18-of-55 (32.7 percent) from the field and 4-of-9 (44.4 percent) from the foul line

> The Tigers registered 41 rebounds, including 29 on the defensive glass

> The Jaguars pulled down 29 rebounds, with 20 coming on the defensive end

> Grambling State finished with 34 points in the paint, 23 bench points, 17 points off 11 Jaguar turnovers, 15 second-chance points and four fastbreak points

> Southern recorded 32 points in the paint, 29 bench points, 18 second-chance points, 11 points off 13 Tiger turnovers and six fastbreak points

News & Notes
> Grambling State sweeps the season series

> The Tigers predicted to win the conference and are defending its regular season crown

> Grambling State leads the conference in 11 different categories

> Dallas Polk-Hilliard paces the Tigers with seven double-doubles

> Ivy Smith, Jr. leads the conference in assists per game, free-throws made and total assists

Up Next
Grambling State concludes its two-game road trip with a 7:30 p.m. contest on Monday at Alcorn State.

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