MONTGOMERY, Ala. -- Ivy Smith Jr. scored 17 points and Grambling beat Alabama State 66-64 on Saturday in a regular season finale.
Grambling (17-14, 13-5 Southwestern Athletic Conference) clinches its first conference title since the 1988-89 season. The Tigers are ineligible for postseason play, however, due to the program's failure to meet the NCAA's required Academic Progress Rate (APR) benchmark.
The Tigers trailed by 11 midway through the first half but battled back late and Thomas scored six points in the final four minutes to tie it up at 38 by halftime.
Jackson scored nine points as part of a 13-6 run to open the second half that gave Grambling a 51-44 lead with 12:51 to play. Alabama State cut it to 55-54 with 7:30 remaining on a Reginald Gee 3-pointer but could not get closer and Gee and Terrance LeFlore both missed 3-pointers in the final four seconds.
Gee scored 16 points for the Hornets (8-22, 8-10). LeFlore had 12 points and Rodney Simeon added 11.
San Diego State beats Xavier 79-74 in Maui
Jalen McDaniels scored 25 points, Devin Watson added 21 and San Diego State held off Xavier 79-74 on Tuesday to earn a spot in the Maui Invitational fifth-place game.
Colorado State beats FGCU 82-74 in Gulf Coast Showcase
Freshman Kendle Moore and Anthony Masinton-Bonner each scored 17 points, leading Colorado State past Florida Gulf Coast 82-74 on Tuesday in the Gulf Coast Showcase
No. 22 Buffalo looks to protect ranking against Dartmouth
Buffalo gained national notoriety with its decisive victory over Arizona in the first round of the 2018 NCAA Tournament, and the Bulls are still handling top-tier opponents.