Dominating First Half Propels Jaguars to PBC Semifinals
COLUMBUS, Ga. – Augusta State University (17-10) used a
dominating first half performance to push past Georgia College
(17-10) 71-49 Friday afternoon in the second quarterfinal of the
Peach Belt Conference Championships at Frank G. Lumpkin Center.
With the win the Jaguars advance to face the University of
Montevallo in the first semifinal on Saturday beginning at 6:00
ASU was led by PBC Freshman of the Year Devon Wright-Nelson who led all scorers with 22 points and also grabbed 16 rebounds which was also a game-high. Harold Doby chipped in 15 points and six boards while O’Neal Armstrong had 11 points and six assists.
Georgia College had a trio of double-digit scorers including PBC First Team selection Ryan Aquino who led the team with 14 points and seven rebounds. Jared Holmes added 12 points while Tarrence Chatman had 11.
Both teams struggled shooting the ball early as they combined for 10 points over the opening five minutes of the game. After going 2-for-8 from the field in the opening five minutes of the first half, the Jaguars went 14-for-21 the rest of the way to pull away from the Bobcats. With the score tied 6-6 with 14:02 to play in the half the Jaguars began 7-0 run capped off by a Wright-Nelson three-point play. A three-pointer by Quin Bivins with 11:28 to play ended the run and cut the Bobcats deficit to just four points. Just five minutes later with the Jags up by six, ASU began a 10-0 run to take a 28-13 with 3:41 to play in the half. ASU would grow its lead over the final minutes to 19 as the half expired, 38-19.
Georgia College shot just 29.2 percent from the field in the first half while Augusta hit 55.2 percent of its shots. GC struggled from deep as they hit just 1-of-7 attempts from beyond the three-point line while ASU did not convert a single three-pointer in the half.
The Bobcats came out in the second half and played even with the Jaguars but it would not be enough as the 19-point halftime deficit proved too much to over come. ASU opened the second half with a 14-4 run to increase its lead to 29 but that would be the Jags largest lead of the contest as the Bobcats began to find their rhythm. An Aquino three-pointer with 4:48 left in the half cut the deficit to 15 but that would be as close as the Bobcats would come as the basket sparked a 10-0 run by the Jaguars to retake a 25-point lead. Georgia College was able to knock three-points off the lead over the final minute as Augusta won 71-49.
ASU will now battle Montevallo in the PBC semifinals for the third-straight season. UM won the first meeting during the 2010 PBC Tournament while ASU took the 2011 meeting, 61-52.