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Valdosta State women fall, men win in Gulf South Conference Tournament semifinals

Posted at 11:38 PM, Mar 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-05 23:39:03-05

VALDOSTA, Ga. (WTXL) — Both the Valdosta State men's and women's basketball teams were at home Friday night in the Gulf South Conference Tournament semifinals. With a win, both teams would advance to Sunday's championship games.

In their quarterfinal win over Delta State Tuesday, the Lady Blazers struggled in the first half, unable to find a rhythm early. That carried over into Friday's game against Lee, as the Blazers fell behind in the first quarter, eventually closing their halftime deficit to just ten.

Little by little Valdosta State chipped away and with under 2:20 to play, a huge three from Delaney Bernard gave Valdosta State its first lead of the game, but they couldn't hold on, falling to Lee 74-71.

The men started off hot against West Georgia, but foul trouble and turnovers allowed the Wolves to climb their way back and go on a run of their own. The Blazers retook the lead with under five to play and never looked back, winning 99 to 89.

"Everything was going against us. They baked in a three, there was a lot going against us," said head coach Mike Helfer. "We really came out and played hard in the second half and a lot of teams won't do that. We showed a lot of character coming out and doing that."

The Blazers will play Sunday for the Gulf South tournament title, while the women await their fate in the NCAA Division II tournament.