The Green-and-White offense struggled shooting 18-of-53 (.340) from the floor and 4-of-17 (.235) from behind the arc.
After a sluggish start by both the Statesmen (4-6, 1-1 GSC) and the Bulldogs (3-11, 1-2 GSC), Union opened up a 17-0 run midway through the first-half to take a 21-9 lead that extended all the way to the 5:34 mark. Jack Madgen broke the six-minute scoring drought for the Green-and-White with a tough layup in the paint.
DSU struggled to settle into the offense in the first-half shooting just 8-of-25 (.320) from the floor, but found a way to put the ball in the basket with Madgen leading the way on 4-of-5 shooting from the floor for 12 points. The Statesmen went into the locker room down 24-31 to the Bulldogs.
Preseason All-GSC selection Terry Leake, Jr. followed up with five points, on just 2-of-10 shooting and three rebounds.
A bevy of Bulldogs contributed to the scoring efforts in the first-half of play but Corieon Pearson tallied eight points to lead the way. Union connected on 10-of-26 (.385) and recorded 10 second-chance points.
The Statesmen rallied at the opening of the second-half to close the Bulldog lead down to 31-34 after a thunderous dunk by Cornel Knight at the 15:53 mark. Leake, Jr. provided the initial spark shooting 2-for-2 with an old-fashioned three-point play to spark the 7-3 run.
Coming off a career-high 15 points against Belhaven University, Matt Albritton railed off nine straight points for the Statesmen to take a 41-39 lead with 11:08 remaining in the contest.
Pedro Faller hit his fourth three-pointer at a critical time in the contest to put the Bulldogs on top 52-49 with 1:27 remaining then extended the lead to 54-49 after a Roy Bullock III basket to seal the game for the Bulldogs.
Leake, Jr. and Madgen led the Green-and-White with 12 points a piece while Albritton chipped in nine in the effort.
The Statesmen return to action on Saturday to face off again the University of North Alabama at home inside Walter-Sillers Coliseum. Tip is scheduled for 4 p.m. and will be broadcast on the Statesmen Sports Network.