NEWARK, N.J. (AP) – Shyquan Gibbs made his only two free-throw attempts of the game with 6.8 seconds left and Rob Ukawuba blocked a 3-point try on the other end as NJIT defeated South Carolina Upstate 88-87 on Thursday night.
The Highlanders (11-19, 3-11) rallied from a 16-point halftime deficit to beat the Spartans (17-14, 7-7) and take the No. 7 seed for the Atlantic Sun tournament where they will play No. 2 Lipscomb in the first round on Monday. The No. 4 Spartans will play No. 5 Kennesaw State.
Mike Cunningham, an 83 percent free-throw shooter, went to the line for his first attempt with 11.2 seconds left but missed, NJIT got the rebound and Gibbs was fouled in transition, and the 64 percent free-throw shooter converted. Ukawuba then blocked Malik Moore’s 3-point try.
Anthony Tarke scored 18 points and Tim Coleman 15 to lead NJIT.
Michael Buchanan led the Spartans with 27 points with Cunningham scoring 16.
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