South Carolina State reeled off seven successive points, five by forward Gregory Wilson, to break the game open in the late going tonight and upset Howard, 88-82.
Trailing much of the game, Howard rallied to a 74-72 lead with 4:56 remaining, Wilson, who scored 15 points, hit a short jump shot and a threepoint play off a layup to put the Bull dogs ahead to stay in only their second victory in 11 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference tries.
Howard ended its regular season with a 6-6 conference record and 14-11 overall. South Carolina State is 7-18 overall.
Howard fell behind by 10 points, 34-24, with 3:09 remaining in the first half. The Bison closed to 37-34 behind Lawrence Norfleet, who came off the bench to score a quick four points. Norfleet finished with 17 points, shooting six for seven from the floor, and pulled down nine rebounds.
Howard remained close throughout the second half on the strength of forward Carlton Richardson, who totaled 24 points and 13 rebounds.
In the final minutes, Howard's tight zone defense was repeatedly penetrated by guard Joe Robinson who scored and passed off for several key baskets.