STATESBORO, Ga. (AP) - Jelani Hewitt scored 20 points, hitting a career-high six 3-pointers, and Georgia Southern shot a season-best 51.7 percent to defeat Chattanooga 84-76 Thursday night in the Southern Conference opener for both teams.
Ben Drayton III also scored 20 points and Eric Ferguson added 17 for the Eagles (2-4), who hit 31 of 60 from the field. Georgia Southern led 42-31 at halftime, hitting 6 of 12 3-pointers.
The Eagles expanded their lead to 15. After a 9-0 Mocs run made it 49-43 with 15:53 remaining, Georgia Southern used a 13-4 burst to get the cushion back to 15.
The Mocs (2-5) made a late surge, capped by three straight layups to get to 80-74 with 49 seconds remaining. Georgia Southern, which committed five of its 18 turnovers in the final 2:22, hit 4 of 6 free throws to seal the win.
Ricky Taylor had 16 points to lead the Mocs.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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