BATON ROUGE, La. -- Jared Sam had 13 points and a career-best 14 rebounds as the Southern defense shut down Alcorn State in the final five minutes to record a 61-48 victory on Saturday night.
Southern (9-13, 5-4 Southwestern Athletic Conference) has won four straight.
Southern trailed most of the first half, but rallied to take a 24-22 lead into the break. Alcorn State opened the second half on an 8-2 push, capped by Maurice Howard's 3-pointer, to retake the lead 30-26. Thomas answered with a 3 and Eddie Reese added two more treys for a 35-30 advantage at the 15:34 mark and the Jaguars never trailed again.
The Braves stayed within striking distance until they were outscored 10-3 in the final 5:20 of the game.
Dante Sterling had 16 points and Howard added 13 for Alcorn State (7-15, 3-6).
Jim Calhoun, who has a career record of 873-380 and led UConn to three national titles before retiring in 2012, has been hired as coach at Saint Joseph.
Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott believes a tentative ruling making show-cause orders illegal in California would threaten NCAA membership for state schools.
Guard James Bouknight, ranked 87th in the ESPN 100, is the first player from the Class of 2019 to commit to UConn and first-year coach Dan Hurley.