A scintillating finish to the first half gave Hampton a lead it would not relinquish, as the Pirates topped Tennessee State 66-54 and dealt the Tigers their eighth consecutive loss on Friday at the Convocation Center in Norfolk, Va.
Bouncing back from a midweek defeat at Illinois that snapped a three-game win streak, Hampton (5-6) got 15 points apiece from guards Quinton Chievous, Brian Darden and Deron Powers. Hampton shot just 34.3 percent from the field but outrebounded Tennessee State by a 44-39 margin and forced 21 turnovers.
Tennessee State (2-9) actually led for most of the first half, building its biggest advantage at 24-15 before Hampton closed the period on a 14-0 run. Powers scored eight during that run, including a pair of 3-pointers. Powers is now 149 points shy of 1,000 for his career.
The Pirates never trailed again, although Tennessee State got as close as 34-30 and was still lurking down 53-49 when Hampton scored six unanswered points to push the margin back to double figures.
Jay Harris, a senior guard, paced Tennessee State with 11 points. No one else who played for the Tigers scored more than eight. Marcus Roper, TSU’s leading scorer, had just six points on 2-of-11 shooting from the field.
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