GARLAND, Texas — Basketball season has ended for Southern University.
Wednesday morning at the Southwestern Athletic Conference tournament, the second-seeded SU women’s basketball team gave away an eight-point lead and went 3-for-24 from the field in the second half in a 54-44 loss to seventh-seeded Alcorn State.
The Lady Braves (13-19) advanced to Friday’s semifinal round, where they’ll face the winner of Thursday’s quarterfinal between Grambling and Alabama A&M.
The Jaguars (13-13) are done. In losing for the fourth time in their last six games, they committed 22 turnovers in all and scored only nine points in the first 19 minutes of the second half.
Lechell Rush had 11 points and seven rebounds for Southern. Jamie Floyd added three points and 10 rebounds, and Adrian Sanders had nine points on 3-of-15 shooting.
Alcorn tied the score at 35 with less than 11 minutes remaining and made only one field goal the rest of the way — but the Lady Braves pulled away by going 17-for-20 at the free-throw line in the final eight minutes.
Southern’s season had begun with more than enough promise.
The Jaguars — coming off back-to-back regular-season championships, but armed this season with six freshmen — struggled in nonconference play, but barreled through two-thirds of the SWAC schedule, going 10-3 and taking over first place ahead of Mississippi Valley State.
But ultimately, the Jaguars came undone. Nagging injuries, the lack of a true point guard and sloppy play led to a late-season tumble.
In their final six games, they shot 33 percent from the floor and averaged 19.8 turnovers.