Bobcat Balance Licks Lander, 71-68
MILLEDGEVILLE, Ga. – How do you beat one of the top-scoring teams in the Peach Belt Conference (PBC), averaging nearly 80 points a game with one of the top-20 scorers in the country? Balanced scoring and good defense, combined with a solid home crowd helped Georgia College men's basketball (11-7, 4-5 PBC) to its third-straight win, toppling Lander University (12-6, 5-5 PBC) 71-68 at the Centennial Center Saturday.
GC got four double-digit scorers, led by senior forward Mike Augustine (Waterloo, Ill.) at 17 points on 5-of-6 from the floor. Classmate Ryan Aquino (Roswell, Ga.) added 16 to the cause, with Ryan Lively (Cumming, Ga.) chipping in all 12 of the team's bench points.
Senior Jared Holmes (Indianapolis) narrowly-missed a double-double with 10 points and a team-high nine rebounds, going 6-of-6 from the free-throw line.
The Bobcats were out-shot 41 percent (22-54) to 39 percent (24-61), but overcame the deficit by causing 13 turnovers and only coughing it up seven times.
For the Bearcats, Corey Wright had 17 points and seven assists to lead the cause, as all five starters scored in double digits. Dwight Tolbert, the NCAA Division II No. 14 scorer coming in at 21.2 points per contest, was held to just 16 on 4-of-13 from the floor. Darion Canty added an 11-point, 11-rebound double-double.
The 'Cats held a commanding 35-28 lead going into halftime, thanks in large part to 11 big points from Aquino.
The Bearcats battled back in the second stanza, taking all the way to the 5:39 mark to tie the contest on a pair of free throws from Wright. Lively responded with a big three from the corner for GC off a pass from Holmes, sparking a quick 7-0 run. Lander would get no closer than three points from that point until the end of the game.
GC will put its three-game win streak on the line Wednesday, Feb. 1 at 7:30 p.m. against the University of Montevallo. Wednesday will be the annual "Pack the House in Pink" contest sponsored by Zeta Tau Alpha.
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.