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Blazers Fall 72-56 to Mississippi College

Blazers Fall 72-56 to Mississippi College
Posted at 12:35 AM, Jan 20, 2023

VALDSOTA, Ga. (VALDOSTA STATE ATHLETICS) — The Valdosta men's basketball team dropped a 72-56 contest at The Complex Thursday night to visiting Mississippi College. With the loss, the Blazers fell to 13-8 overall and 9-6 in Gulf South Conference play, while the Choctaws improved to 11-8 overall and 7-8 in league play.

The Blazers were led by senior Jacolbey Owens as he was 6 of 11 from the field, 1 of 4 from deep and 2 of 2 from the line for 15 points. Junior Mike Isler added 10 points on 4 of 6 from the field and 2 of 4 from the line. Sophomore Caden Boser led the team in rebounds pulling down six. Owens' 15 points moved him to 989 career points as a Blazer as he needs just 11 points to become the 27th Blazer to score 1,000 career points.

The two major factors that came into the game included three-point shooting and free throws. When it comes to shots from beyond the arc, the Choctaws went 10 of 22 for 45.5 percent while the Blazers were 3 of 19 for 15.8 percent. From the free throw line MC shot a near perfect 10 of 11 for 90.9 percent, while Valdosta State was just 5 of 13 from the stripe for 38.5 percent.

Mississippi College was led by a game-high 18 points and 10 rebounds from Galen Smith on 7 of 10 from the field and a perfect 4 of 4 from the charity stripe. Miles Miller added 16 points on 6 of 9 from the field and 4 of 6 from downtown as Justin Reid was perfect on the night, shooting 4 of 4 from the field and 2 of 2 from the stripe, chipping in 10. The Choctaws outrebounded the Blazers, 31-26.

The Blazers sprung to life early as they held a 5-2 lead early in the first after a quick three-point shot courtesy of junior Jay Rucker to open the game, followed up by a jumper from graduate student Maurice Gordon. From there the Choctaws and Blazers battled the entire length of the first half trading blows back and forth. VSU attempted to pull away after a deep three from Owens put the Blazers up seven, 31-24 with 4:29 to go in the first half. However, the Choctaws were resilient and fought right back, going on a 13-2 run to end the half with the lead, 35-33.

The second half, the Blazers attempted to answer back with a quick two-point jumper from Owens to tie the game up at 35 a piece with 18:23 left to go in the game. From there Mississippi College would go on a 12-2 run following a pair of free throws from Smith to put the Choctaws up ten, 47-37, with 12:42 remaining. Despite a valiant effort from the Blazers, the Choctaws continued to tack on points to their lead, and VSU was not able to overcome the deficient. By the final buzzer, VSU fell 72-56.

VSU has one more home game this week as they are set to host Delta State for Hall of Fame Weekend this Saturday, Jan. 21 at 4 p.m.