MOBILE, Ala. - Chris Daniels had 21 points and 14 rebounds, both season highs, to lead Georgia to a 79-70 victory over South Alabama on Saturday night.
Georgia (8-1) never relinquished an early lead in the opener of the Coors Classic despite South Alabama's pressure and a lackluster game from Ezra Williams, the Bulldogs' leading scorer and rebounder.
Williams was held to nine points, 11 under his average, and he had just two rebounds.
South Alabama (3-5) went to its inside game to cut into an 11-point deficit early in the second half. Henry Williams scored five points during a 12-5 run to pull South Alabama to 54-42 with 13:48 remaining.
After going four minutes without a field goal, Georgia turned up its defensive pressure with a pair of blocked shots and strong rebounding to shut down South Alabama.
Jarvis Hayes, who finished with 18 points, hit a 16-footer to push Georgia's lead back to double digits with five minutes left and South Alabama got no closer than five the rest of the way.
South Alabama missed a flurry of long jumpers down the stretch and finished 9-of-31 from 3-point range.
Georgia shot 55 percent from the floor for the game and outrebounded South Alabama 40-26, but the Bulldogs committed 17 turnovers.
Henry Williams led South Alabama with 16 points and Demetrice Williams had 13.
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