Georgia State men’s basketball (4-5) wilted in the second half last night, then scored the last 11 points of regulation to push the game into overtime. Alas, the Panthers still lost to Georgia Southern 74-72. The late comeback on the road showed some determination by this young team and might be a good omen for future games.
Georgia State was down 63-52 with 2:53 to play. GSU junior forward Brandon McGee scored on a layup, freshman guard Devonta White made three free throws and a layup and junior forward Eric Buckner hit a jumper. That got the Panthers within two before Panthers junior guard James Fields scored on a layup with 8.4 seconds remaining.
Georgia State had to be encouraged by the performances of their two junior college transfer forwards. Brandon McGee had his second straight double-double with 23 points, on 8 of 11 shooting, and ten rebounds. Buckner played solid when he was not on the bench in foul trouble; he scored 14 points on 7 of 8 shooting and grabbed six rebounds.
Overtime was a back-and-forth affair thanks to three baskets by Buckner. Down 72-69, McGee hit a clutch 3-pointer with 1:14 to go, but Georgia Southern guard Ben Drayton’s two free throws with 10 seconds left completed the scoring.
Georgia State has now lost ten consecutive overtime games over three seasons. In addition, the Panthers have lost 13 straight regular season road contests since Dec. 5, 2009. Georgia Southern is now 4-9 and this win was their first over a Division I opponent this season.
Georgia State men’s basketball next plays in Chattanooga in the Dr. Pepper Classic on Wednesday, Dec. 29 and Thursday, Dec. 30. The first-day opponent will be Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (4-7) of the Southland Conference at 4:30 p.m. (ET).