Grant Maxey had 24 points and 11 rebounds as Jackson State beat Alabama A&M 87-74 victory on Saturday night in the Southwestern Athletic Conference opener for both teams.
Maxey scored 15 of his points in the first half as Jackson State (3-11, 1-0 SWAC), the defending conference champion, hit 60 percent of its shots on the way to a 52-41 halftime lead.
Maxey scored eight of the Tigers' first 10 points of the second half to stretch the lead to 62-45 with 15:20 remaining. Darron Griffin's 3-pointer with 8:20 left gave Jackson State its biggest lead, 76-57.
Alabama A&M, (3-8, 0-1) outscored Jackson State 11-2 over a 3-minute span to pull within 78-71 with 4:51 to play. But the Bulldogs could manage only one field goal over the final 4 minutes.
Griffin and Jeremy Caldwell added 17 points each for Jackson State, which outrebounded Alabama A&M 40-28. Trant Simpson led Alabama A&M with 18 points, Hilton had 13 and Kudus Ogbara added 10.