ATLANTA, Ga. | Ivy Smith, Jr. put up a layup with eight seconds remaining and missed, but the loose ball grabbed by Curtis Haywood was tipped back into the Tiger basket as the Grambling State University men’s basketball team stunned Georgia Tech, 64-63, on Friday night at McCamish Pavilion.
Grambling State (2-5) used a 22-8 run to turn a 25-23 halftime lead into a 47-31 advantage with 10:19 remaining. Georgia Tech (4-2) rallied and used a 30-13 run to take a 61-60 lead with 1:02 left.
The Yellow Jackets got two free throws by Jose Alvarado with 43 seconds left, but that would be the last time Georgia Tech would score. Smith sank two shots at the charity stripe to cut the margin to 63-62 with 43 seconds left. Tadric Jackson missed two shots at the line and Drake Wilks came down with the big rebound as the Tigers called a timeout with 22 seconds remaining to set up the final play.
After the timeout, Smith drove the lane to put up the shot and the ball bounced around and was tipped by Haywood and went into the basket to give the Tigers a 64-63 lead.
Diontae Jones paced three Grambling State players in double figures with 18 points, nine rebounds, two steals, one block and one assist. Axel Mpoyo tallied 14 points, eight rebounds, one block and one assist, while Smith registered 14 points, six assists, two steals and two boards.
Alvarado led Georgia Tech with a game-high 22 points, including four 3-pointers. He also added four assists, three steals and one rebound. Tadric Jackson registered 19 points and seven boards.
After starting the season with seven straight road games, Grambling State will finally play its home opener. The Tigers will entertain Tougaloo College at 7 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 4 at the Fredrick C. Hobdy Assembly Center.