by Matt Dalby, sports information graduate assistant
MACON, Ga. – The Georgia College men's basketball team played Division I Mercer University to the wire at The University Center in Macon, Ga. Thursday night, with the Bears using a three-pointer at just 3.5 seconds left to come away with the 58-57 victory.
The Bobcats and Bears went neck-and-neck in the first half, as GC trailed 32-30 heading into the locker room despite shooting just 30.3 percent (10-of-33) from the field. Mercer shot a solid 45.5 percent (10-of-22) from the floor in the first frame.
Newcomer Tarrence Chatman (Macon, Ga.) was on fire early on, pouring in nine points in the first seven minutes of action and 11 for the half. He would finish the game tied for the team-high with 14 points, adding three rebounds and three assists.
Both teams began the second half strong on the defensive end, but a three-ball from senior Ryan Aquino (Roswell, Ga.) pulled the Bobcats within a point, 38-37, at the 14:17 mark.
Aquino would finish the game with 14 points, eight boards and three steals while going 2-of-3 from beyond the arc.
The Bobcats would regain the lead for the first time in the second half following a Chatman three-pointer, making the score 46-44 with 6:46 to play.
Aquino would knock down another big triple to give the 'Cats a 53-49 advantage, which was quickly cut to two by the Bears with just 1:46 on the clock.
With the shot clock winding down to just two seconds, senior Jared Holmes (Indianapolis, Ind.) buried a two-pointer from the baseline to put the Bobcats up 56-51 with just over a minute to go.
Mercer would work their way back, needing a three-pointer from sophomore Jakob Gallon to take a 58-57 lead.
It proved to be the winning bucket, as Georgia College failed to get a shot off as time expired.
The Bobcats will look to build on the solid effort as they head to Newberry, S.C. to take on Lee University Friday, Nov. 11 at 5 p.m.
The Georgia College Department of Athletics, two-time winners of the PBC Commissioner's Cup, sponsors 10 varsity athletic programs at the NCAA Division II level. As a Division II program, Bobcat Athletics prides itself on balancing the life of the student-athlete, evidenced by the teams' multiple appearances in post-season competition as well as documented academic success and community-service involvement. Sign up at www.twitter.com/BobcatSports and www.facebook.com/gcbobcats for up-to-the-minute reports, and visit www.GCBobcats.com for more information, and to nominate your favorite former Bobcats and Colonials to the GC Athletics Hall of Fame.