GREENVILLE, S.C. (AP) -- Junior guard Travis Jones came off the
bench to score 17 points and South Carolina State rallied from
seven points down in the final two minutes to beat Marshall 71-66
to start the Jack In The Box Holiday Classic on Thursday night.
William Sago added 16 points for the Bulldogs (3-6), including
the go-ahead free throws with 39 seconds left. Brian Mason had 14
points and 14 rebounds for South Carolina State.Senior forward Mark Patton scored a carer-high 28 for the
Thundering Herd (4-5), which seemed in control with a 66-59 lead on
Chris Ross' layup with 2:07 remaining.But the Bulldogs closed by scoring the game's final 12 points.
The comeback started with Mason's 3-pointer with 1:38 to go. Jones
followed with a layup and a free throw prior to Sago's game-winning
foul shots.A brief tussle at the end ruined Marshall's chance at getting
back in it.Travis Aikens' try at a tying 3-pointer was blocked by Mason
with 7 seconds left. Jones wound up with the ball for the Bulldogs
and is fouled by Aikens, which touches off some angry moments
between the teams and leads to technicals fouls against Marshall's
Patton and South Carolina State's Mason.Aikens is ejected.Patton hit three of four 3-pointers against South Carolina State
after coming into the game just 2 of 11 from behind the arc this
season.South Carolina State will face Furman or Kennessaw State in the
tournament championship Friday night.