- Associated Press - Saturday, January 3, 2015

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - Maurice Strong scored 12 of his 14 points in the second half to help Alabama State open Southwestern Athletic Conference play with a 71-50 win over Grambling State on Saturday night.

Strong’s dunk with 5:28 left capped a 15-1 run to put Alabama State (5-5, 1-0) up 58-41. Strong had six points during the run and grabbed eight of his nine rebounds in the second half.

After a 28-all halftime tie, Alabama State opened the second half on a 10-3 run. Grambling State (2-9, 0-1) closed within 43-40 before the Hornets pulled away.

Luther Page added 12 points and Wendell Lewis scored 11 for Alabama State. The Hornets had their largest lead on Jamar Pope’s 3-pointer to cap the scoring for both teams with 55 seconds left.

Mark Gray had 18 points and 10 rebounds for Grambling. A’Torri Shine scored 12, Remond Brown 11 and Richard Freeman grabbed 14 rebounds.

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