MOBILE, Ala. — Josh Ajayi scored the game-winner with 44 seconds to go, Rodrick Sikes scored eight of the last 10 points and South Alabama held off Appalachian State 83-77 on Saturday.

Neither team led by more than nine during a contest that saw five ties and five lead changes. Griffin Kinney knotted the score for Appalachian State three times down the stretch. Each time Sikes put the Jaguars back in the lead.

Sikes scored 26 points for South Alabama (11-9, 4-3 Sun Belt) — making 13 of 14 at the free-throw line — and Ajayi picked up his fifth double-double with 24 points and 11 rebounds.

Kinney scored 14 points for the Mountaineers (8-12, 3-4) on 6 of 9 shooting. Justin Forrest scored 15, and O’Showen Williams 12. Ronshad Shabazz, one of the Sun Belt’s top four scorers, was held to three points on 1-for-14 shooting.

South Alabama won the battle on the glass, 35-27, its 16 defensive rebounds aiding in 11 points on the fast break.