Huntsville, AL - After a hot shooting start, Valdosta State struggled from the field for the final 25 minutes of the games as the Blazers fell 73-62 to Alabama-Huntsville in Gulf South Conference men's basketball action at Spragins Hall Saturday.
The Blazers (12-7, 6-7) made 12 of their first 24 field goal attempts to race out to a 34-25 lead 15 minutes into the game. However, VSU made just 9-of-44 the remainder of the game.
The two teams traded baskets for the first six minutes of the game before Valdosta State used a 17-7 run to grab a 24-18 lead. Blake Justice opened the run with a three-pointer before Jalen Crawford followed a Conner Blasi lay-up for UAH with back-to-back buckets. Breon Dixon added two free throws for the Blazers before Lester Moore, who had not scored a point in his career prior to the game, took over. The junior walk-on hit two free throws and made a pair of three-pointers to close out the run with a VSU leading 27-19 with 8:43 to play in the first half.
The Chargers (12-9, 8-6) closed to within two points over the ensuing minute and a half, but David Murray scored five straight points and Crawford added a jumper with 5:01 remaining in the first half to put Valdosta State in front 34-25.
The Blazers proceeded to miss their final seven field goals of the second half as Alabama-Huntsville pulled to within 34-32 at the half.
UAH opened the second half on a 12-3 run to grab the lead. The Chargers made five out of seven field goals during the run as Seab Webster scored five points and Blasi added four more. Meanwhile, after Colin Cook scored on the first Blazer attempt of the second half, VSU missed its next four attempts, a streak that allowed the Chargers to build a 44-37 lead.
Larry Stone eventually ended the Valdosta State with a drought and the Blazers connected on three of their next four attempts to close to within 49-47, but the VSU shooting woes resumed as it missed its next eight field goal attempts to fall behind by nine with just over seven minutes to play.
The Blazers got to within three points three minutes later, but connected on just one of its final eight attempts.
For the game, Valdosta State made 21-of-68 attempts to shoot a season-low 30.9 percent from the floor. Crawford led the Blazers with 12 points on 5-of-18 shooting while Justice scored 10 on a 4-of-15 night.
Webster led Alabama-Huntsville with 17 points while Blasi and Ronnie Mack had 14 each. The Chargers made 25-of-48 field goals to shoot 52.1 percent from the field and dished out 17 assists in the game.