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Norfolk State 74, James Madison 71, OT

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Norfolk State guard Jamel Fuentes scored just three points in the first 44:33 of Monday night’s nonconference game at James Madison.

But Fuentes scored the last three, including a tie-breaking jumper with 27 seconds left and a foul shot with six seconds remaining to lift the Spartans to a 74-71 overtime win at the Convocation Center in Harrisonburg, Virginia.

The Dukes (7-5) had a chance to force a second overtime, but reserve guard Andre Nation’s 3-pointer came up begging as time expired.

Guard Jeff Short pumped in a game-high 30 points for Norfolk State (9-5), adding eight rebounds. Guard D’Shon Taylor added 11 points, while forward Rashid Gaston contributed a 10-point, 12-rebound double-double before fouling out. Reserve forward Jordan Butler added 10 points and three blocked shots.

Guard Jackson Kent scored 17 points to pace James Madison, while forward Yohanny Dalembert added 15, including a free throw with a minute left to tie the game at 71. Guard Ron Curry netted 13, canning a jumper with 19 seconds remaining in regulation to even the score at 65.

The Spartans had an opportunity to avoid overtime, but Short’s 3-pointer was off the mark with four seconds remaining.

The first half was back-and-forth for the first 14 minutes, with neither team leading by more than four points until James Madison ripped off seven straight points for a 29-21 lead at the 5:15 mark on a tip-in by Dalembert.

Nation’s 3-pointer with 3:06 left in the half gave the Dukes a 34-24 advantage, but they didn’t score for the half’s remainder and Norfolk State crawled within 34-28 at halftime.

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