By: Brian Howard/Grambling Athletics

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. | Tra’Michael Moton poured in a team-high 18 points, but it wasn’t enough as the Grambling State University men’s basketball team trailed by as many as 19 points in the first half to Florida A&M and nearly completed the comeback in falling short, 75-66, in a Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) game on Monday night at the Al Lawson Center. 

Grambling State (4-12 overall, 2-2 SWAC) fell behind by 19 points (39-20) with just over five minutes to play in the first half. The Tigers closed the gap to 42-30 at the break and came back to tie the game at 60 with just over five minutes remaining. 

Moton paced the Tiger offense with 18 points on 8-of-15 shooting. Cameron Christon scored 10 of his 16 points in the first half. 

MJ Randolph led all scorers with 24 points to lead Florida A&M.  

– Florida A&M (3-11, 1-2) raced out to a 22-9 advantage after a Jai Clark 3-pointer with 11:19 remaining in the opening half 

– Clark connected on a rare four-point play as the Rattlers continued to extend their lead to 34-16 with 6:22 left 
– Cameron Christon, who had 10 points in the first half, helped the Tigers slowly trim the deficit to 39-25 after a pair of free throws with just over four minutes left 
– Grambling State got a key 3-pointer by Zahad Munford right before the break, cutting the deficit to 42-30 
– The Tigers trimmed the margin to 50-43 after a 3-pointer by Tra’Michael Moton with just under 13 minutes to play 
– Grambling State continued to work on the deficit, trimming the margin to 57-52 after a driving layup by Moton with 8:53 left 
– The Tigers climbed all the way back from a 19-point deficit to tie the game at 60 with just over five minutes remaining 
– However, back came Florida A&M, getting back-to-back buckets by Moragne and D.J. Jones, to push the lead to 64-60 with 3:58 left 
– The Tigers could not rally in the final three minutes as Florida A&M sealed the game at the free-throw line for a 75-66 victory 

– Grambling State shot 40.0 percent (26-of-65) from the floor and 60.0 percent (9-of-15) from the free-throw line  
– Tra’Michael Moton led the way for the Tigers with 18 points, on 8-of-15 shooting, with four assists and one steal 
– Cameron Christon recorded 10 of his 16 points in the first half and pulled down three boards 
– The Tigers finished with 36 points in the paint, 20 second-chance points, 17 points off 12 Florida A&M turnovers, 14 bench points and eight fastbreak points 
– Florida A&M shot 48.1 percent (25-of-52) from the field and 66.7 percent (18-of-27) from the charity stripe  
– MJ Randolph paced the Rattlers with a game-high 24 points, on 10-of-12 shooting, with seven rebounds, four assists and one steal  
– Jai Clark registered 16 points and a pair of steals 
– D.J. Jones added 10 points, a game-high nine boards and one blocked shot 

– Bryce Moragne tallied 10 points, eight rebounds, four assists and one steal 

– The Rattlers finished with 22 points in the paint, 18 bench points, 15 second-chance points, seven fastbreak points and four points off five Grambling State turnovers 

Grambling State returns home for three straight games, starting on Saturday against rival Southern. Tip-off against the Jaguars during Legend’s Night is set for 5:30 p.m. from the Fredrick C. Hobdy Assembly Center.