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Jaguars outlast Troy in Sun Belt tourney

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. — South Alabama outscored Troy 41-34 in the second half to pull off the quarterfinal upset 78-75 on Sunday night in the 2009 Sun Belt Championship.

The loss drops Troy to 19-12 on the season and potentially ends the Troy careers of four seniors. The loss also drops Troy to 2-4 all-time in the Sun Belt Conference tournament, and 0-3 in the quarterfinals of the event.

Troy was 2-0 versus the Jaguars so far this season, but head coach Don Maestri did not believe the third game was any different than the previous two.

“I don’t think it makes any difference,” he said. “I don’t care how many times you play it’s going to be tough. I think they played very well tonight and we didn’t play as well as we have the last four or five games.”

After a pair of free throws by Ronald Douglas, Brandon Hazzard drilled a trey to cut USA’s lead to 75-71 with less than two minutes to go.

Hazzard finished with a game-high 22 points. For his efforts he was named State Farm Player of the Game.

Tom Jervis hit a 15-foot jumper to slice the Jaguar lead down to two points.

Troy fouled DeAndre Coleman, sending him to the line and Coleman hit both for a 77-73 lead.

South Alabama missed four free throws with less than 30 seconds left.

Mike Vogler missed a desperation three attempt, potentially ending the Trojans season.

Troy will now wait to see if an invitation is extended for any postseason play.