The game at the KSU Convocation Center was the final one of the season for the Owls (6-25, 3-15 Atlantic Sun Conference), who had been eliminated from contention for a place in the A-Sun tournament.
It also marked the last game for interim coach Jimmy Lallathin, who took over after Lewis Preston’s leave of absence for personal and medical reasons. Lallathin went 3-13 at the helm, and Preston is expected to return for the 2014-15 season, athletic director Vaughn Williams has said.
North Florida (16-15, 10-8) jumped to a 41-33 halftime lead, behind 11 first-half points from Beau Beech and 10 from Wallace.
North Florida led by double digits for most of the second half. Kennesaw State was unable to cut the deficit to fewer than six points after halftime.
The Ospreys made 31 of 36 free-throw attempts, led by Dallas Moore who made 13 of 14. Moore scored 17 for North Florida while Beech and Chris Davenport finished with 13 apiece.
Delbert Love led Kennesaw State with a season-high 26 points on 11-of-15 shooting. Nate Rucker added 13 and Bernard Morena had 10.
North Florida enters the conference tournament as the No. 6 seed, and will play at No. 3 USC Upstate on Tuesday.
Southern Wesleyan 71, Southern Poly 65: The Hornets closed out the regular season with a loss, unable to stage a second-half rally.
Southern Poly (13-17, 7-11 SSAC) had the edge from the field, but Southern Wesleyan (16-13, 10-8) came up with more 3-pointers, by a 5-2 margin. The Hornets also struggled at the free-throw line, shooting 17-for-32 (53.1 percent).
Kevin Phillip had a double-double of 21 points and 21 rebounds, to go with six blocks, while former Hillgrove High School standout Marcus Dortch had 13 points. Chris Key and C.J. McElrath each scored 10.
Mercer 69, Jacksonville 55: Daniel Coursey had 15 points and 11 rebounds as Mercer earned a share of the Atlantic Sun Conference title in a victory over Jacksonville.
Jakob Gollon added 18 points and Bud Thomas scored 12 for the Bears who finished the game on a 16-4 run after Jacksonville had closed to within 53-51 with 5:48 left.
Mercer (23-8, 14-4) will get the No. 2 seed in the A-Sun tournament due to the tiebreaker favoring co-champion, Florida Gulf Coast.
With the No. 7 seed, Jacksonville (12-17, 8-10) will return to Mercer’s Hawkins Arena on Tuesday for an immediate rematch in the conference quarterfinals.
After shooting no free throws for the first 30 minutes, the Bears finished the game 14 of 22 from the line.
Jarvis Haywood had 13 points for the Dolphins who nearly erased a 44-26 deficit, only to fall back in the final minutes.
Georgia State 66, Texas State 55: R.J. Hunter scored 18 points and grabbed eight rebounds as Georgia State preserved its No. 1 standing in the Sun Belt.
Former Walton High School star Ryan Harrow added 14 points for the Panthers (22-7, 15-1), who have now won five in a row. Manny Atkins and Devonta White scored 13 points apiece.
Georgia State scored first on an Atkins 3-pointer less than a minute in and led 23-22 at the break. Texas State came within one point, 32-31, on a Phil Hawkins layup at 16:44 in the second period but the Panthers responded by going 17-9 to lead 49-40 with 9:02 left.
Georgia State held on for the win, holding Texas State scoreless for the final 2 minutes.
Southern Poly 82, Southern Wesleyan 66: The Hornets rallied to win the game, clinch the SSAC Eastern Division and earn a place in the NAIA tournament.
Down four at halftime, Southern Poly (22-6, 16-4) outscored Southern Wesleyan (12-16, 8-12) by a 50-30 margin after the break.
Quentessa Bullock scored a season-high 23 points, while Arnissa Galloway had 17 points and 10 rebounds. Sarah Ogoke had 14 points, and Shana Ward came off the bench for 10 points and 10 rebounds.