Lions Roar Back To Hold Off GSW

FLORENCE, Ala. - An 8-0 run in the middle of the second half erased Georgia Southwestern's largest lead of the afternoon and provided the necessary spark for North Alabama to garner a 74-65 non-conference men's basketball victory on Sunday afternoon in Flowers Hall.

GSW has its four-game winning streak snapped and drops to 6-3 overall while UNA rebounds from its first loss of the season and improves to 9-1.

It was the Hurricanes who found themselves in a hole early on, bouncing back from an 11-4 deficit to eventually grab the lead at 22-21 and take a 34-33 advantage into the halftime break. GSW has trailed at the intermission once this season. 

As has been the case for most of the year, GSW shot the ball well early. The 'Canes finished 13-for-25 from the floor to post a 50-plus shooting percentage over the opening 20 minutes for the fifth time this season. Michael Tankersley, Milos Kleut and Matt Shaw combined to connect on 6 of 7 attempts in the first half.

In the second period, Shaw gave GSW its biggest lead of the game when he put the Hurricanes ahead 44-37 with a layup at the 16:19 mark. The Lions answered with their decisive run over the next 3:28 as the Hurricanes missed six-straight shots.

After exchanging the lead three times, a Keynan Jackson layup gave UNA the advantage for good, 56-54, with 9:05 to play.

The Lions converted seven of their final eight attempts from the foul line to hold off the Hurricanes.

Shaw connected on 3 of 4 from beyond the arc en route to his team-high 17 points for GSW. Jamon Hawkins added 15 and Tyler Gunnett chipped in 10. Tankersley pulled down a game-high nine rebounds.

DeAndre Hersey scored 16 of his game-high 20 points in the second half to lead UNA. Rashaun Claiborne added 15. Bruce Adams fell a rebound shy of a double-double with his 14 point, nine rebound performance.

GSW was more accurate from the floor (48.1 shooting percentage vs. 38.2 percent) and had more rebounds than UNA (36-31), but committed 11 more turnovers (21-10) and had nine fewer steals (14-5).

Southwestern returns to Peach Belt Conference action on Thursday with a visit from USC Aiken at 7:30 p.m.