TSU Falls Short in Double OT Loss to Delta Devils
Saturday, November 26, 2011
TSU Falls Short in Double OT Loss to Delta Devils
Las Vegas, Nev. - A pair of made free throws helped Mississippi Valley squeak past the Tennessee State University Tigers, 90-89 in double overtime, on Friday afternoon at the Continental Tire Las Vegas Invitational.

The Tigers (2-4) trailed by nine with 4:57 left in regulation, but soared back to tie the game at 76 with five seconds left in the contest. MVSU (1-4) was down by two in the first overtime period, but banked a pair of free throws with zero seconds remaining to go into a second OT frame.

In the final overtime period, TSU had an 89-88 lead with 1:43 left before Cor-J Cox was fouled with a minute remaining. Cox drained both free throws giving the Delta Devils the lead.

MVSU then had another front-end opportunity on the 1-and-1, but missed it. TSU turned the ball over on the final opportunity, ending the game.

The Tigers shot 51 percent (28-of-55) from the field, out-rebounding the Delta Devils 36-31.  MVSU made 47 percent (27-of-57) of their shots, forcing 21 Tigers turnovers. The win marked the sixth consecutive time MVSU had defeated the Tigers and the first loss ever for TSU in Las Vegas.

Jordan Cyphers inked a career-high 22 points, making a game-high five triples. The Wichita, Kan., product was 8-of-12 from the floor with an assist.

Robert Covington and Patrick Miller each added 18 points and seven rebounds for the Tigers. Covington dished out a career-high five assists, while Miller had four assists for the Tigers. The duo combined for all five steals for TSU.

Also reaching double digits was senior guard Wil Peters with 14 points and three assists. Freshman M.J. Rhett led the Tigers with eight rebounds.

Tennessee State's first four of five made field goals were from the three point line. Peters had two treys including one that put the Tigers up 15-9 with 14:08 left on the clock.

MVSU fired back with a triple from Kevin Burwell and two baskets to narrow the gap within two with 12:00 minutes left in the half.

The game went back-and-forth as TSU connected on eight triples in the first half. Paul Crosy made a putback with seconds left on the clock to put the Delta Devils up 40-39 at the half.

For the half, TSU shot 46 percent (13-of-28) from the field and 57 percent (8-of-14) at three-point range. Mississippi Valley inked 48 percent of their shots (14-of-29), including 6-of-11 from three-point range.

At the half, Covington and Cyphers each had 10 points to lead the Tigers. Terrence Joyner led MVSU with 10 points and three boards.

The Tigers led in the rebounds column, pulling in 18 boards compared to the Delta Devils' 13.

In the second half, Mississippi Valley stretched out their lead to nine with 4:57 left from a Cox 3-pointer. The Tigers went on a 17-to-6 run to tie the game. Miller had nine points during the stretch including the free throw that send the game into overtime.

The Tigers led on two occasions in the first over time after baskets from Kellen Thornton and a three from Cyphers. However, MVSU answered back six shots at the free throw line to send the game to a second OT period. Thornton finished with six points and four rebounds.

In the final OT, MVSU reeled off two back-to-back 3-pointers to open to a four-point advantage. Cyphers drained his fifth triple of the night to help the Tigers pull within one at 87-88. Thornton hit two free throws to give TSU the 89-88 lead. MVSU then answered with another pair of free throws from Cox that ended up to be the game winner for the Delta Devils.

TSU will play at 1:30 p.m. (CT) against Morgan State who fell 62-61 to Cal Poly on Friday afternoon. Live stats will be available online at TSUTigers.com.