HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — D’Marcus Simonds scored 15 points and Georgia State used a big run to start the second half in defeating Alabama A&M 63-53 on Wednesday night.

Devin Mitchell added 12 points and Malik Benlevi 10 for the Panthers (5-2).

Alabama A&M had a 14-7 lead but Georgia State’s defense held the Bulldogs without a field goal for more than seven minutes with the teams tied at 29 at the half.

Georgia State opened the second half scoring the first five points and used a 9-3 run to take a 38-32 lead with 15:45 remaining, eventually going up by 12.

De’Ederick Petty led the Bulldogs (0-7) in their home opener with 16 points, while Andre Kennedy added 10.

“This was a gritty win for us tonight,” Panthers coach Ron Hunter said. “Our defense kept us in the game in a tough environment to play. Our defensive effort is going to be what wins us a lot of games this year.”