RICHMOND, Ky. --- Tennessee State saw host Eastern Kentucky post a second half comeback and were able to hold off the Tigers down the stretch 74-68 in the opening round of the O'Reilly Ohio Valley Conference Tournament Tuesday night.
The Tigers led 39-32 at halftime, but the Colonels came back to take the lead for good on an Alonzo Hird layup near the nine-minute mark. The Colonels would build their largest lead at 65-57 with 5:10 remaining.
TSU made a comeback of its own, pulling to within one following a four-point play by freshman Reiley Ervin that made the score 69-68 with 1:35 left. However, the Tigers could not convert the rest of the way as EKU scored five unanswered points to claim the six-point win.
TSU finished shooting 48 percent from the field (26-54) after converting 64 percent (16-25) in the first half.
Wayne Arnold and Rod Flowers each scored 14 points while Ervin finished with 10.
Hird had a double-double to lead EKU with 15 points and 14 rebounds. Alonzo Hird also added 15 for the Colonels (20-8, 11-5).
TSU, which tied for fifth in the regular season, the Tigers were the seventh seed. TSU was 14-17 overall.