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Southern Utah falls to Montana State in OT thriller in Big Sky semifinals

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Southern Utah’s Maizen Fausett, right, trie to drive to the hoop against Montana State during a Big Sky Tournament semifinal game at Idaho Central Arena in Boise, Idaho, on Friday, March 12, 2021.

Photo courtesy Brooks Nuanez

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Amin Adamu had 29 points as No. 5 seed Montana State narrowly defeated top-seeded Southern Utah 80-77 in overtime in the semifinals of the Big Sky Conference Tournament on Friday. Jubrile Belo added 22 points for the Bobcats, including a buzzer-beating turnaround jumper in the lane to force overtime. Belo also had eight rebounds and eight blocks.

Abdul Mohamed had 11 points and 14 rebounds for Montana State (13-9), which advanced to the championship to face Montana-Eastern Washington on Saturday.

Xavier Bishop, the Bobcats’ leading scorer entering the contest at 15 points per game, shot only 19% for the game (3 of 16).

Southern Utah scored 27 second-half points, a season low for the team.

Maizen Fausett had 22 points for the Thunderbirds (20-4). Harrison Butler added 16 points and seven rebounds. Tevian Jones had 15 points and 10 rebounds.