NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Jewuan Long drove the baseline for a layup with 4.4 seconds left, and 12th-ranked Murray State rallied from seven points down in the final 5:28 to beat Tennessee State 54-52 for the Ohio Valley Conference tournament championship Saturday and an automatic NCAA tournament berth.
Isaiah Canaan stripped Tigers guard Patrick Miller of the ball driving to the basket, while Long guarded Robert Covington on a 3-pointer at the buzzer to preserve the win, getting the Racers to 30-1 and avoiding a second loss to the only team to beat them this season.
Covington led Tennessee State (20-12) with 14 points, and Kellen Thornton had 11.
Now the Racers are back in the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2010 when they went 31-5 and beat Vanderbilt in the first round.
Canaan and Donte Poole each scored 14 points for the Racers.