Georgia guard Kenny Gaines went off for 35 points, highlighted by three straight 3-pointers late in the second half, helping the Bulldogs hold off Murray State 63-52 Friday in a low-scoring grinder at Stegeman Coliseum in Athens, Georgia.
Georgia led for the majority of the game, but didn’t put the Racers away until late in the second half. Murray State took a 47-46 lead on a pair of Wayne Langston free throws with 5:34 left in the game. But Gaines answered with three straight 3-pointers, the third putting the Bulldogs up 57-50 with 1:35 to play.
Murray State guards Bryce Jones and Damarcus Croacker each finished with 11 points, and guard Chad Culbreath came off the bench to also add 11 points for the Racers, who struggled from the field. They shot just 30.4 percent from the floor and connected on just 4 of 22 3-pointers.
The Bulldogs outrebounded Murray State 47-37.
Georgia bounced back from an opening overtime loss to Tennessee-Chattanooga to even its record at 1-1. Gaines was the only Bulldog in double figures.
Murray State (2-1) is coming off a 29-6 mark last season, but returns just one starter in senior forward Jeffery Moss and saw coach Steve Prohm leave in the offseason to take over at Iowa State.