Varnado leads Troy past Texas State 59-53 for Sun Belt title - Mar 14, 2017
Jordon Varnado (6'6''-F-97) had 18 points and 12 rebounds and Troy defeated Texas State 59-53 in the championship game of the Sun Belt Conference Tournament on Sunday at Lakefront Arena. The sixth-seeded Trojans (22-14) advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2003 after winning their third game in three days and fourth in the tournament. The fourth-seeded Bobcats (20-13) defeated top-seeded UTA 83-62 in the semifinals. Troy never trailed in the game after pulling even at 9-9, though the score was tied twice in the second half. Varnado scored 10 straight points for the Trojans as they took control with a 57-50 lead with 14 seconds remaining. Wesley Person (6'3''-G-95), who was named the Most Outstanding Player in the tournament, scored 16 points and Jeremy Hollimon (6'3''-G-94) had 15 for Troy. Kavin Gilder-Tilbury (6'7''-F) led Texas State with 19 points, scoring 16 in the second half. Troy, which led the Sun Belt with 305 3-pointers, won despite making just 1 of 17 3-point attempts.
BIG PICTURE Troy: The Trojans enter the NCAA Tournament with momentum after beating the Nos. 2, 3 and 4 seeds in a three-day stretch. Texas State: The Bobcats, who dominated a short-handed UTA team in the semifinals, could never get any consistent offense going against Troy.
UP NEXT Troy: Waits to hear its destination, seeding and first opponent in the NCAA Tournament. Texas State: Was hoping to make the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1997, waits to hear whether its season will be extended by an invitation to another postseason tournament. Sun Belt Tournament Final: Troy - Texas State 59-53 Sun Belt Tournament Semifinals: Texas State - UTA 83-62 Troy - Georgia State 74-63
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