After a hard fought run to tie an otherwise Morehead State led game, JSU dropped the final points and came out with a 66-63 loss.
The Gamecocks struggled all night to keep up with the Eagles who were dominant in scoring for most of the night.
The first half saw them make 9 of 12 three-point shots and be 10 of 19 for field goals. While the Gamecocks were only 2 of 8 on three-point attempts and 7 of 20 for field goals, they still managed to stay within a reasonable distance as the first half ended.
Morehead State came out with the first shots and took the early lead on the Gamecocks. It would be nearly five minutes in before JSU would score their first points of the night to attempt to stop an already advancing Morehead State lead.
JSU made it within one before the Eagles started to make their climb toward their half-high lead of 12. It was on Corban Collins’ good three-pointer that MSU made it out to 32 with JSU behind them at 20. In the final two minutes of the half, the game seemed to go back and forth before JSU finally got within five with the help of a free throw by Darion Rackley. However, it took only four seconds more for MSU’s Collins to hit yet another three-pointer to close the half with Morehead State up by eight.
The second half saw JSU open relatively strong against the Eagles. The Gamecocks were able to stay within seven until around the 15 minute-mark when MSU pushed their lead out to eight. However, Avery Moore came out and hit JSU’s only good three-pointer of the second half and brought MSU’s lead back down to five.
The score would stay within the confines of MSU’s eight point lead until 3:12 when a layup by Rackley brought JSU the closest they had been to MSU all evening, within two.
Morehead State managed to push their lead back up to four before a steal and layup by Malcolm Drumwright gave JSU the tie they had been playing so hard for. With 20 seconds remaining MSU had the lead by one and, after a free throw to push the lead back out to two, they gave the ball back to the Gamecocks.
Drumwright’s free throw broke the lead down to one with 11 seconds left. However, it would also be on Drumwright’s foul that MSU would be handed the ball for two free-throws that would ultimately end the game. On a last second attempt at a tie, JaQuail Townser would try a three-point shot that would fall empty and close the game with the score 66-63, Morehead State.
The Gamecocks were 18 of 46 for field goals in the second half and 24 of 28 for free throws in the game. Rackley had the team high 16 points with D.J. Felder behind with 14 of his own.
The Gamecocks move to 9-13 overall and will play Belmont on Jan. 29.