The teams combined for just 12 points through the first nine minutes of the game. Georgia State closed the half on a 12-6 run - six from Ryan Harrow - and led 25-19 at the break.
Georgia Southern (16-4, 9-2 Sun Belt) came back in the second half to tie at 41 with 7:36 left on Hughes' 3-pointer. Back-to-back 3-pointers by Hughes and Jake Allsmiller gave the Eagles a five-point lead with 3:47 left. They made 5 of 6 from the line at the end to seal it.
Jelani Hewitt had 13 points, nine rebounds, five assists, four steals and a blocked shot off the bench for Georgia Southern.
Georgia State (15-8, 8-4 Sun Belt) was led by Harrow's 17 points, while Markus Crider added 14 points and seven boards.