Durham, NC (SportsNetwork.com) - Behind a game-high 22 points from Brandon Goode, the Norfolk State Spartans were able to fend off the UNC Asheville Bulldogs, 80-78, in the consolation round of the NIT Season Tip-Off at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
Goode shot 11-of-15 from the field and grabbed seven rebounds for Norfolk State (3-2), while Malcolm Hawkins scored 16 points on 4-of-8 from 3-point range. Anell Alexis added 13 points, and Jamel Fuentes logged nine points and eight assists.
For UNC Asheville (1-4), Sam Hughes paced five players in double figures with 16 points. Jaron Lane netted 15 points, David Robertson and D.J. Cunningham poured in 13 points apiece, and Andrew Rowsey rounded out the balanced effort with 12 points.
Norfolk State outshot UNC Asheville in the first half, 48 percent to 32.3 percent, as it carried a 32-27 lead into intermission.
The Bulldogs managed to tie the game at 53 with 11:40 remaining following a three-point play by Cunningham, but the Spartans ran off five straight points to regain the advantage. UNC Asheville would cut its deficit to one possession on several occasions down the stretch but never overtook the lead.
Norfolk State lost the rebounding battle, 41-22, but it committed just four turnovers to UNC Asheville's nine.