South Carolina State chances of avenging an early season loss to Albany fell short in a, 70-61 defeat Wednesday at SEFCU Arena.
"We had a great game plan for slowing the game down and making good adjustments against a very good Albany team," said SC State head coach Tim Carter. "Make no mistake about it this team (Albany) is as good as they come and very well coach and it showed down the stretch."
The Great Danes were led by senior guard Jacob Iati who finished with a game-high 21 points, while nailing seven 3-pointers from behind the arch. Meanwhile, teammate guard Mike Black added 18 in the victory.
Carter stated, "Iati is probably one of the best shooters we faced all year. We left him open and he made us pay."
The Bulldogs showed pose throughout the game, and didn't look like a team that was defeated by 28-points to the Great Danes back on November, 20. Junior forward Chasen Campbell put SC State ahead by four, 22-17 knocking down back-to-back 3-pointers at the 8:03 mark.
Junior center Matthew Hezekiah took over in the first-half dominating the frontcourt tossing in a baseline jumper to push SC State's lead to five, 26-21 with 5:53 remaining. Senior center Blake Metcalf () cut the Great Danes lead to three, 26-23 off a driving layup.
Senior guard Khalif Toombs responded nailing a 3-pointer with 1:19 remaining to push the Bulldogs lead to six, 29-23. Iati hit a long range bomb from behind the arc with 0:28 seconds left in the first-half to cut the lead to three, 29-26.
South Carolina State led five, 31-26 over Albany at halftime. Hezekiah led all scorers at with 12 points on 6-of-7 shooting from the floor.
Iati open the second-half on fire nailing his third 3-pointer on the night to put Albany up 34-33 at the 18:13 mark. Albany jumped ahead to their biggest 10-points, 63-53 off a layup by Black with 5:37 left
Freshman forward Darryl Palmer's 3-pointer with 3:56 left in regulation cut the lead to seven points, 63-56. Iati sealed the victory nailing his seventh 3-pointer of the night to secure the victory for the Great Danes. Albany held on to complete the season sweep of SC State 70-61.
South Carolina State was led by Hezekiah with 18 points and eight rebounds, while teammate Chasen Campbell finished with 11-points off the bench. The Bulldogs were out-rebounded 36-31, with Albany also winning the battle at the free-throw line shooting 78.3 % (18-of-23).
SC State returns to action when action on Monday, December 17, when they take on the Tigers of Missouri in a non-conference matchup. Tip-off is 7 p.m.