Alcorn advances to SWAC Tournament championship game

Published 11:01 pm Friday, March 11, 2022

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Alcorn State is one win away from ending a 20-year championship drought.

Justin Thomas scored 19 points, Dominic Brewton had 15 points and 11 rebounds, and Alcorn State defeated

Alabama A&M 69-64 in the semifinals of the Southwestern Athletic Conference men’s basketball tournament on Friday.

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Alcorn (17-15) will play Texas Southern (17-12) in the SWAC championship game Saturday at 5 p.m. on ESPNU. Texas Southern is the defending SWAC tournament champion, while Alcorn is trying to win its first title since 2002.

Texas Southern beat Grambling 73-54 in the other semifinal on Friday.

Alcorn State swept the two regular-season meetings with Texas Southern, although one was decided by a single point and the other by three points.

Alcorn played its 32nd game Friday night, and the 16th that has been decided by six points or less. Although the Braves had to squeak out another win, this one didn’t come down to the very end.

The Braves erased a nine-point halftime defict to finally take the lead for good on a jumper by Thomas with 6:38 remaining. It was part of a 12-2 run that gave the Braves a 66-59 lead with less than two minutes to go, and they stayed in front by at least three points the rest of the way.

Keondre Montgomery added 14 points for Alcorn.

Jalen Johnson and Garrett Hicks led Alabama A&M (12-18) with 20 points apiece. Johnson added 11 rebounds for a double-double.
———
SWAC Tournament
At Birmingham, Ala.
March 9
Texas Southern 54, Jackson State 50
Alcorn State 64, Prairie View A&M 63, OT
March 10
Grambling 60, Southern U. 58
Alabama A&M, 61, Florida A&M 56
March 11
Texas Southern 73, Grambling 54
Alcorn State 69, Alabama A&M 64
March 12
Texas Southern vs. Alcorn State, 5 p.m. (ESPNU)