The Georgia State Panthers defeated the Texas State Bobcats 59-56 at the GSU Sports Arena Thursday night. Senior forward Markus Crider poured in a career-high 24 points in 33 minutes. Junior forward Jeremy Hollowell chipped in with 11 points.
“It was a good basketball game. We won games basically how we’ve won them all year [playing sound defensively],” said Georgia State head coach Ron Hunter. “Our transition offense has to get better … being a really good defensive team, there’s nothing wrong with that. Last time I checked, in the championship game we scored 36. In the first round game, we scored 54.
“It is very hard to win games at this level,” said coach Hunter. “It means I have a great staff and I’ve had great great players. I’ve had no idea it happened so quick.”
In the first half, Crider had 13 points in 16 minutes. Hunter eluded to the fact he felt he needed to shake things up and go small, which allowed Crider to get into a great rhythm early. He and T.J. Shipes usually are clogging up the paint.
“I was aggressive tonight,” said forward Markus Crider. When asked about the Panthers’ 13-7 record and their tough stretch of games, he responded by saying: “No team can’t be beaten. We know who we are, we know who we’re facing. If we do what we do, we come out with a W.”
Coming into tonight’s game, Panthers lost four out of 5. With Thursday’s win, the Panthers record is now 13-7 which has them sixth in the Sun Belt Conference. Ironically, Georgia State was 13-7 at this point last season, yet they finished the 2014-15 campaign with 25 wins culminating with their historic win against Baylor in Jacksonville in the 2015 NCAA Tournament.
Entering play tonight, Georgia State has the 17th most stingy defense in the nation, giving up 63.5 points per game. The Panthers next game is at the GSU Sports Arena against the University of Texas at Arlington. Tip-off is at 2:30pm.