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Varnado leads Miss State past Jackson St.

Mar 17, 2010 - 5:37 AM STARKVILLE, Miss.(AP) -- Jarvis Varnado scored 21 points and had 11 rebounds to lead Mississippi State to an 81-67 victory over Jackson State on Tuesday night in the first round of the National Invitational Tournament.

Mississippi State (24-11) shot 40.7 percent from the field (22 for 54) and hit 8 of 29 3-pointers, but still controlled the pace of the game with its defense and ball control.

"Considering what we came out of, I was very pleased with what our kids were able to do out there," Mississippi State coach Rick Stansbury said. "It was our fourth game in our fifth day. I thought our focus and our readiness was very good."

Jackson State (19-13) turned the ball over 16 times in the loss, its second in a row after a 13-game winning streak.

The Bulldogs will play North Carolina in the second round of the NIT on Saturday.

Mississippi State opened the game on a 13-6 run and led 32-23 at the half, but played with little intensity in the opening period.

Sunday's Southeastern Conference tournament championship game was still clearly on the Bulldogs' minds.

"We had a heartbreaking loss and everybody was kind of down," Varnado said. "But we said to each other that we could play for another championship, the NIT championship at Madison Square Garden."

The Bulldogs were four seconds away from beating Kentucky and earning an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament before eventually falling to the Wildcats in overtime.

Jackson State got within five points early in the second half, but after Dee Bost took a flagrant foul to the groin from Phillip Williams, the momentum shifted.

"He punched me, low blow or whatever," Bost said. "I guess he figured they weren't going to see it. It kind of woke me up."

Williams received two technicals and was ejected, while Bost hit 3 of 4 free throws and a 3-pointer to spark a 15-5 Bulldog run.

"It really put us on our heels a little bit," Jackson State coach Tevester Anderson said. "It went from five points to eight or nine points, and they pulled away from there. It shook out guys up a good bit."

Bost had 18 points and six rebounds for the Bulldogs and Kodi Augustus added 13 points.

Varnado's double-double was his 18th of the season and the 32nd of his career.

JSU's Garrison Johnson scored a career-high 32 points and Tyrone Hanson added 11.








  • NIT 1st ROUND
    AT STARKVILLE, MS
    NCAA BB FINAL 1ST 2ND TOTAL
    --- --- -----
    JACKSON STATE 23 44 67
    MISSISSIPPI STATE 32 49 81 FINAL

    HIGH SCORERS: JACKSON STATE - GARRISON JOHNSON 32, TYRONE HANSON 11,
    ROD MELVIN 8
    MISSISSIPPI STATE - JARVIS VARNADO 21, DEE BOST 18, KODI
    AUGUSTUS 13

    Mar 17 12:11 AM


  • NIT 1st ROUND
    AT STARKVILLE, MS
    NCAA BB HALFTIME 1ST 2ND TOTAL
    --- --- -----
    JACKSON STATE 23 23
    MISSISSIPPI STATE 32 32 HALFTIME
    HIGH SCORERS AT HALFTIME
    JACKSON STATE - GARRISON JOHNSON 7, ROD MELVIN 6,
    PHILLIP WILLIAMS 4
    MISSISSIPPI STATE - KODI AUGUSTUS 10, BARRY STEWART 7,
    JARVIS VARNADO 6

    Mar 16 10:51 PM
  • 10
    roots
    Jmlk17 Added 5 roots

    Jackson State vs. Mississippi StateMar 16 3:41 PM
  • 5
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    GREGnKY Added 5 roots

    Jackson State vs. Mississippi StateMar 16 5:19 AM