Official student newspaper of Alabama State University

The Hornet Tribune

Official student newspaper of Alabama State University

The Hornet Tribune

Official student newspaper of Alabama State University

The Hornet Tribune

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Hornets upsets Grambling, earns a trip to SWAC tournament

Alabama+State+University+Hornet+guard+Amarr+Knox+drives+to+the+basket+for+a+lay-up+during+the+final+regular+season+game+against+the+Grambling+State+University+Tigers+in+the+Dunn-Oliver+Acadome.
Justin B. Freeman
Alabama State University Hornet guard Amarr Knox drives to the basket for a lay-up during the final regular season game against the Grambling State University Tigers in the Dunn-Oliver Acadome.

The Alabama State University Hornets pulled off a major upset against the top-ranked SWAC (Southern Athletic Conference) team, the Grambling State University Tigers, 87-84 in double overtime on March 9 at the Dunn-Oliver Acadome.
With the victory, the Hornets will play in the SWAC Tournament for the first time since 2019, claiming the eighth seed.
Hornet guard T.J. Madlock, named to the All-SWAC second team, finished the night with 23 points, eight rebounds and two blocks. Guard Isaiah Range added 21 points, while C.J. Hines had eight points, four assists, three rebounds and a block.
Leading the Tigers was forward Jourdan Smith, who had 18 points, 11 rebounds, four assists, two blocks and two steals. Forward Tra’Michael Moton contributed 14 points and two steals.
The Hornets were up early following Ranges’ back-to-back 3-pointers. Madlock blocked Tigers guard Kintavious Dozier’s shot.
The Hornets were unable to capitalize off the turnover as forward Sean Smith’s shot did not fall.
A jumper in the paint by Smith cut into the Hornets deficit, 27-20 with five minutes remaining in the first half. Tiger forward Antwan Burnett assisted with Moton’s 3-pointer.
Hornet forward Eric Coleman’s 3-pointer was no good; it was rebounded by forward Darrell Reed, who slammed it in for a dunk. The Hornets were up 37-29 at the halftime break.
Burnett was sent to the free-throw line after being fouled by Hornet forward Eric Coleman. He would miss the first free throw but convert the second one.
The Tigers used a string of free throws and 3-pointers to narrow the Hornets lead.
Hornet guard Amarr Knox’s 3-pointer gave the Hornets a 68-60 cushion. Burnett would go back to the free throw line, making both.
Tigers guard Mikale Stevenson’s steal led to Burnett making an easy bucket as the Tigers were now down by one 68-67.
Following a timeout, Moton hit a 3-pointer with 13 seconds left. Madlock was fouled and missed one of the free throws.
This proved to be costly, as Stevenson’s jumper tied the game up 72-72 and sent it into overtime.
With 1:24 remaining in the first overtime, the Tigers were up 80-77. Ranges’ miss would be rebounded by Smith. Moton would rush a jumper as the shot clock was about to expire. The miss was rebounded by Madlock, who was fouled and again made a pair of free throws.
Hornet guard Micah Octave would make the shot that sent the game into a second overtime.
Range made a 2-point jumper to put the Hornets on top, 83-81. Stevenson was fouled by Hornet center Ubon Okon as his shot went in. He converted the free throw for a 3-point play.
The Hornet took the lead following Madlock’s free throws. Reed came up with a key steal that led to the Tigers being forced to foul.
Madlock’s free throws gave the Hornets what they needed to complete the upset and leave the Tigers stunned.

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