Manhattan, KS (Sports Network) - The first Division II program to make an appearance in the NIT Season Tip-Off, the Chargers of Alabama-Huntsville made the most of their opportunity as they defeated the North Texas Mean Green, 78-75, at Bramlage Coliseum.
Leading the way on offense for the Chargers (2-0) was Wayne Dedrick who tallied 21 points off the bench in just 23 minutes of action. Jaime Smith added 18 points and eight assists, offsetting his seven turnovers, while Xavier Baldwin tacked on 11 points and seven boards.
The Mean Green (0-2) was paced by Jordan Williams who posted a game-high 26 points on 8-of-16 shooting from the floor. Roger Franklin added 16 points and nine rebounds, Chris Jones 13 points and seven assists, while Tony Mitchell registered a double-double before fouling out with his 10 points and 11 boards in the setback.
The first 20 minutes of action were very competitive as the teams traded leads 13 times and went through seven ties before UAH went into the break with a 41-37 advantage. The Chargers shot 7-of-14 behind the three-point line in the period and at the same time held UNT to just 2-of-9 on the perimeter.
The Chargers surged ahead by double digits eight minutes into the second half, but the team watched that advantage wither away down the stretch, needing a pair of free throws by Baldwin in the final seconds to secure the three-point decision.
North Texas scored 25 points at the free-throw line and forced 16 turnovers, but that wasn't enough to overcome 35.9 percent shooting from the floor overall.
With the victory the Chargers are now set to face off against regional host Kansas State on Tuesday, with North Texas taking on Lamar which lost to the Wildcats earlier on Monday in a 79-55 final.