Cajuns Defeat Georgia State on Wilson’s Layup, 80-78
Freshman Mylik Wilson scored on a layup with 2.1 seconds remaining as Louisiana came back from 13 points down midway through the second half and defeated Georgia State 80-78 Thursday night at the Cajundome.
Kane Williams made a pair of free throws to tie the game with 15 seconds left. The Cajuns called their final timeout and put the ball in Wilson's hands and the freshman drove to the basket and kissed it off the glass.
Georgia State threw the ball the length of the court but it went through the hands of Jalen Thomas and went out of bounds as the horn sounded.
The Cajuns trailed 62-49 with 9:30 to play and were still down by nine, 72-63 with 3:44 remaining. But Jaylen Johnson scored on a three point play after an offensive rebound, Cedric Russell hit a pair of three throws and Dou Gueye did the same, cutting the lead to 72-70 with 2:13 remaining.
Thomas made a pair of free throws to increase the lead to four points before Gueye tipped in a Wilson miss with 1:40 left. After Williams made a pair of free throws, Russell hit back to back three pointers to give the Cajuns a 78-76 lead with :25 left, setting the stage for the final possession.
Johnson and Russell led the way with 17 points each, with Russell scoring 14 in the second half. Wilson added 16 and P. J. Hardy tallied 13. Justin Roberts and Williams had 17 apiece for Georgia State, while Thomas added 14. Corey Allen, who scored 24 points in Georgia State's 90-52 win in Atlanta, was held to eight points on 4-12 shooting.
"I thought P. J. Hardy's defense on Allen was crucial," head coach Bob Marlin said after the game. He played all forty minutes and gave us everything he had." Georgia State's last field goal came on a Josh Linder dunk with 4:56 left.
The Cajuns (10-14, 5-8 Sun Belt) led 32-17 with 7:26 remaining in the first half, but Georgia State (15-9, 8-5) outscored the Cajuns 20-11 to trail by only six, 43-37 at the half.
"They switched to a zone and they were able to get some turnovers off that defense which hurt us," Marlin said. Georgia State got five turnovers in the last 3:29 to get back in the game.
The Cajuns started the second half ice cold, making just one of their first twelve shots from the field, as Georgia State opened up a 55-47 lead on an 18-4 run. Louisiana only managed nine points in the first twelve minutes of the second half, before scoring 28 in the last eight minutes of the contest, hitting seven of their final twelve shots. The Cajuns also suffered only one turnover in the final twelve minutes and outscored the visitors in points off turnovers, 24-12.
Louisiana is back in action Saturday night against Georgia Southern with tipoff scheduled for 7:00 pm.