Prairie View controlled the pace and the scoreboard for much of its First Four game against Fairleigh Dickinson, but fell short in the end.
The SWAC champs saw a double-digit lead waste away in the latter part of the second half, falling 82-77 in its first tournament appearance in 21 years on Saturday. The Panthers led by as many as 13 in the second half before being unable to seal the deal.
FDU’s Darnell Edge went off for 33 points, hitting seven 3-pointers, and Jahlil Jenkins added 22 points to help mount the epic comeback.
Prairie View’s Gary Blackson put up a stellar performance with 27 points and six rebounds while DeVonte Patterson chipped in 17 and eight.
PVAMU’s fast-paced attack brought it success early on both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball, as it forced 17 turnovers on the day. It looked like the SWAC champs might run away with the game but Edge was terrific in the second half and Blackson and Co. weren’t able to keep it up, finishing their season at 22-13.
It was a tough way to go out, but when you look at all PVAMU achieved, it definitely has much to be proud of. It shook off a rough start to run through the SWAC regular season and take care of business in the conference tournament. Everyone had penciled Texas Southern as the SWAC’s top team after their P5 wins, but PVAMU showed that when it mattered most, it was the conference’s best team.