BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Gary Blackston and Dennis Jones scored 17 points apiece to lead six Prairie View A&M players in double figures and the Panthers beat Texas Southern 92-86 on Saturday night in the Southwestern Athletic Conference Tournament championship game.
Prairie View earned its second NCAA Tournament berth and first since 1998.
Gerard Andrus had 12 points, Taishaun Johnson and Darius Williams scored 11 apiece and Devonte Patterson added 10 for the top-seeded Panthers (22-12), who have won 11 games in a row.
Patterson made 1 of 2 free throws and Jones added a layup to put Prairie View in front 83-81, the last of 15 lead changes, with 2:11 left. Trayvon Reed's layup with 38 seconds to go made it 85-all but the Panthers went 7 of 8 from the foul line, and TSU committed two turnovers, from there to seal it.
Jalyn Patterson led Texas Southern (21-13) with 24 points, including 18 in the second half. Devocio Butler scored 18, Tyrik Armstrong added 16 and Jeremy Combs had 13 points and 10 rebounds. Combs, the SWAC player of the year, fouled out on the offensive end with two minutes remaining.
TSU had won the last two, and four of the last five, SWAC Tournaments.
Armstrong had 12 points in the first four-plus minutes as the Tigers scored 15 of the first 19 points and a dunk by Reed gave them a 13-point lead but PVAMU answered with a 19-4 run over the next five minutes to take its first lead a 26-24.
The Panthers scored the first six second-half points to take their biggest lead at 51-41 with 18:20 left.