Southern upsets Mississippi St, 76-72 behind Banks, Rogers
STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) Southern (La.) University's Trelun Banks and Adrian Rogers combined for 34 points in a 76-72 victory over Mississippi State in the first meeting between the schools Monday afternoon.
The visiting Jaguars held off a late rally by the Bulldogs of the SEC as both teams moved to 1-1 on the season.
Banks finished with 18 points while Rogers added 16 by knocking down 4 of his six attempts from beyond the arc. Jared Sam added 10 points and a team-high eight rebounds for Southern. Mississippi State was led by Craig Sword's 16 points while Gavin Ware added 13 points.
Southern held a 72-64 lead with 2:33 left in the game before Mississippi State went on an 8-2 run and cut the Jaguars' lead to 74-72 with 1:33 left in the game. Mississippi State freshman Malik Newman missed two free throws with 46 seconds left with the Bulldogs trailing 74-72.
''We knew they have a very good team and a well-coached team,'' said Southern head coach Roman Banks. ''But we also think we have a pretty good group of guys that on any given night can compete. We knew they would come out with a big surge in the second half and make a big push. So we knew it was important to keep an early lead and keep the pressure on them.''
Ware had only two of his 13 points in the second half and had just three shot attempts in the second half.
''We have to get Gavin more shots,'' said Mississippi State head coach Ben Howland. ''But give credit to their defense. They came out with more fire and intensity and I have to make our guys understand that you have to show up every game or you will get beat. This just shows the parity of college basketball.''
Southern opened the game on a 7-2 run and managed to hold the lead throughout most of the first half. The Jaguars were able to build that lead largely due to shooting 56.7 percent in the first half, including 4-of-8 beyond the arc in the opening half.
The Bulldogs has 11 turnovers in the first half and trailed by as many as seven points in the first half. The Bulldogs never led by more than one point in the first half and only held three different leads in the first half.
Mississippi State only shot 29.4 percent in the second half and just 38.3 percent for the game. The Bulldogs were only 11-of-31 beyond the arc and had 19 turnovers. The Bulldogs held a 44-34 advantage on the backboards and received a game-high 10 rebounds from Travis Daniels, who also had nine points.
''Way too many 3-pointers shot for our team,'' said Howland. ''That was dictated by their defense but that is way too many 3-point shots for us. Half of our shots were 3-pointers and we can't have that.''
Southern shot 46.8 percent for the game and 37.5 percent in the second half. The Jaguars had just eight turnovers in the game and had 10 steals. The Jaguars also outscored Mississippi State 34-20 in the paint.
Southern scored 24 points off Mississippi State turnovers while the Bulldogs only had 10 points off Southern turnovers.
Mississippi State: Senior center Gavin Ware earned SEC Player of the Week honors on Monday following his 26-point, 13-rebound performance in last week's season-opening win over Eastern Washington. Highly-touted freshman Malik Newman made his college debut after missing the first game with a turf toe injury.
Southern: The Jaguars of the Southwestern Athletic Conference have now opened the season against two straight SEC opponents after falling at Arkansas Friday.
Mississippi State plays Miami on Thursday in the opening round of the Puerto Rico Tipoff.
Southern hosts Tulane on Thursday.