STATESBORO, Ga. (AP) — Jelani Hewitt scored 33 points, including a trio of 3-pointers, to lift Georgia Southern to a 78-72 win over Florida International on Monday.
After a series of lead changes, Georgia Southern (4-1) pushed ahead for good midway through the first period with a 6-0 spurt capped by back-to-back Hewitt layups to make it 21-16 with 7:48 to go in the half. The Eagles took a 34-30 advantage into the break and hung on through the second half, shooting just 37.7 percent from floor overall but going 31 of 41 from the free throw line.
Trent Wiedeman and Curtis Diamond added 11 points apiece, while Mike Hughes had nine points and 11 rebounds in the win.
Florida International (3-1) kept the game close, shooting better from the field (44.1 percent) than the Eagles but getting fewer trips to the free throw line.