It’s been a long-time coming, but Savannah State can finally call itself SIAC champions once more.
SSU used a dominant first-half against Benedict College to secure the title in a 76-62 win. The last time SSU won a conference title was during the 1980-81 SIAC Tournament.
Benedict jumped out to a four-point lead in the first minute-and-a-half, then proceeded to score just 11 points in the final 18:26 of the first half. There appeared to be a proverbial lid on the basket as BC shot just 24.1 percent from the field during that stretch, including an 0-for-6 performance from the 3-point line. SSU, meanwhile, shot a blistering 54.3 percent from the field and 42.9 percent from the 3-point line to take a 46-15 lead into halftime.
“We played both ends of the floor. The guys played tremendous defense,” Savannah State head coach Horace Broadnax said after the game. “Our guys were turning the ball over, speeding them up and held them to six points, eight points for a long time, scoring the ball extremely well. Got up 31 points was unbelievable. Made it one of the hardest coaching jobs in the second half.”
SSU’s shooting fell to 31.3 percent from the field in the second half, but it hit 19 of 25 free-throws and never allowed its lead to fall to single-digits. Benedict outscored SSU 47-30 in the second half but it was never able to mount a serious threat.
Marcus Scott was named the SIAC Tournament following his 18-point, three assists performance. Avery Joyner added 15 points in the winning effort.
Timothy Bing Jr. scored a game-high 20 points for Benedict while Malachi McCoy added 13 points and 15 rebounds for Benedict. BC’s record dropped to 23-7 on the season.
Savannah State will now await the NCAA Division II Selection Show on Sunday night to find out who it will play in the Division II NCAA Tournament. The selection show is slated for 10:30 P.M. EST and can be viewed here.