Sunday, February 7, 2016

Prairie View A&M shocks Texas Southern, recordsTigers first SWAC loss

PRAIRIE VIEW, Texas -- Avery Lomax hit a pair of go-ahead free throws with three seconds left as Prairie View A&M held off Texas Southern 59-55 inside the Baby Dome Saturday evening.

Playing in front of an energetic crowd, the Panthers responded in the opening minutes as they stormed out to a 13-2 lead by making their first four shots while TSU only hit one shot in the first six minutes. When TSU started to make its shots, the Panthers kept on charging as their inside tandem of Admassu Williams and Karim York hit buckets inside as the lead grew to 19-7 at the 11:24 mark.

In true rivalry fashion, Texas Southern would charge back with an 11-0 run which spanned five minutes as they trailed 19-18. Jayrn Johnson would end the run with a pair of three balls to move PVAMU up by seven but TSU continued to claw back into the game from the charity stripe as Brian Carey hit four straight free throws followed by Tyree Bynum's layup for a 25-24 PVAMU lead with 4:06 left on the clock.

Jordan Giddings answered Bynum's layup to up the lead back to three points and a steal by Ja'Donta Blakely led to a Johnson layup and 29-24 margin with 2:41 left. Two huge blocks by the Panthers on the defensive end kept TSU from scoring as Giddings nailed a trey with 58 seconds left for the final score of the half as PVAMU led 32-24 at halftime.

The second half was a tug-of-war affair as the Panthers were pulled by the Tigers several times towards the brink but held on for dear life. TSU would close to within four points on three occasions in the first 10 minutes of the half but the Panthers found a formula to hold them off with timely baskets.

With 5:40 left, the Panthers jumped out to a 52-42 advantage and had TSU on the ropes. However, TSU's Orlando Coleman picked the perfect time to nail the team's first three-pointer of the game as the lead was cut to 52-45 with 4:31 left. PVAMU would miss its next shot attempt and two free throws by Carey drew TSU to within 52-47. The Panthers failed capitalize on a big turnover as they missed two more shot attempts and TSU continued to fight as Malcom Riley's bucket drew them to within 52-49 at the 1:53 mark.

With the crowd getting restless, both teams struggled to hit baskets over the final minute as Coleman's missed trey led to a huge rebound from Blakely with 27 seconds left. TSU was forced to foul as the shot clock was off and Blakely hit both free throws to up the score to 54-49.

Riley would answer Blakely's free throws with a three-pointer to pull within 54-52 at the 20-second mark and the Panthers narrowly avoided a disaster as a potential turnover was ruled a kickball. After the near-miss, the Panthers' inbound play worked to perfection as Admassu Williams was in position for a breakaway bucket but was fouled. Williams hit both free throws for a two-possession game but Chris Thomas went coast-to-coast in only three seconds to move TSU back within 56-54 with 10 seconds left. The Tigers sent PVAMU's Tevin Bellinger to the line and the SWAC's leading free throw shooter made 1-of-2 from the stripe for a 57-54 advantage.

The Panthers fouled Chris Thomas on the ensuing play to keep them from attempting a three-pointer and the move paid off as Thomas missed both free throws followed by Lomax's go-ahead baskets with three seconds left to give interim head coach Byron Smith his first win.

Jayrn Johnson had his third straight 20-point performance with 21 points and three blocks while Williams chipped in with 11. Lomax had a career night on the boards with 11 rebounds while Blakely followed with seven.

As a result of PVAMU scoring 40-plus points, all fans and PVAMU faculty and staff have an opportunity to achieve the Raising Canes Challenge. All combos are buy one get one free for 24 hours at the Raising Canes in Cypress at 26302 Northwest Freeway in Cypress.

The Panthers are back in action next weekend as they'll face Grambling State at 5 p.m. inside the Baby Dome.



No comments: