FORT VALLEY, Ga. - For the second time in seven days, Valdosta State used a big second half to upend Fort Valley State, this time by a score of 82-66, Tuesday evening.
With the win, VSU improves to 8-1 while the Wildcats fall to 3-5.
Valdosta State jumped out to an early lead in the game as it scored 18 of the first 22 points of the contest. David Murray hit a pair of three-pointers to open the score before Desmond Lofland connected on a jumper to get FVSU on the board. James Anacreon followed with a dunk for the Blazers before Murray connected on two more trifecta and, after another Lofland bucket for Fort Valley State, Anacreon a lay-up. Josh Sparks closed out the opening run with a lay-up with 14:24 to go in the first half that posted VSU to an 18-4 lead.
Fort Valley State stormed back as it scored the next eight points of the game to close within six before cutting the Valdosta State lead to just 34-33 at the halftime intermission.
The Wildcats scored the first bucket of the second half to claim its first lead of the contest while the next three minutes of play featured a tie and three lead changes, the last coming on a Murray three-pointer that put VSU in front for good. The Murray three opened an 18-6 run by the Blazers that once again opened a double digit lead at 55-44 with 10:30 to play in the contest.
FVSU got no closer than six points the rest of the game while the Blazer lead grew to as much as 19 on a Sparks lay-up wiht 2:19 remaining.
Sparks connected on 8-of-11 field goals and 7-of-9 free throws to score a game-high 23 points while also pulling down 15 rebounds and blocking five shots. Murray tallied 18 points, on 6-of-12 shooting from beyond the three-point stripe, while Anacreon also had 18 points to go along with six rebounds.
The Blazers shot 50.0 percent in the game, including 58.1 percent in the second half when they connected on 18-of-31 shots while out-scoring Fort Valley State 48-33. VSU also owned a 41-27 advantage in rebounding in the game.
Brandon Davey had 12 points to lead the Wildcats while Jeremy Sledge finished with 10. Fort Valley State shot just 38.1 percent from the floor in the game.
Valdosta State returns to action next Tuesday, December 18 when it hosts Coastal Georgia in the Blazers' final game of 2012. Tip-off is slated for 7:00 p.m.