DAHLONEGA, Ga. - The No. 5-seed Georgia College Women's Basketball team (18-12) gave the No. 1-seed University of North Georgia (26-6) everything it could handle Saturday in the Peach Belt Conference (PBC) Semifinals, falling to the Nighthawks 69-66.
The game was a tight one throughout, as neither squad had a lead of double-digits during the contest. The Bobcats led for the majority, owning an advantage from the first bucket to the 1:55 mark of the third quarter. North Georgia went on a nice run in the early portion of the fourth, leading by as many as nine at the mid-way point.
Georgia College clipped the advantage to three after junior Sydney Cleveland (Gainesville) drained a huge three-pointer with 44 seconds left. Another Bobcat defensive stop gave them a chance to tie with eight seconds remaining, but the Bobcats couldn't land the game-tying long-range shot as time expired.
Senior Alyah McGriff (Suwanee) ended her career with another amazing effort, netting 22 points, pulling in eight boards and totaling four steals. Junior Shay Tarver (Covington) had 19 points, and Cleveland chipped in 17.
The two teams were evenly matched in shooting, and separated by a handful of rebounds; North Georgia leading 42-37. The Nighthawks were able to rely a bit more on reserves, the UNG bench out-scoring the Bobcats' 43-2.
With the loss, McGriff completes her career making a mark on the school record books. She joined the 1,000-point club at Georgia College this season, finishing with 1,125, good for 14th in school history. Her career rebounds total of 611 is positioned seventh, and her 109 career blocks put McGriff 3rd.
The Bobcats finished 18-12, the most wins for Georgia College since the 2013-14 season, and the second-most in head coach Maurice Smith's tenure. McGriff earned All-PBC honors, and Cleveland a spot on the PBC All-Academic Team. The game also brings a close to the careers of seniors McGriff, Ta'Asia Wright (Denmark, South Carolina) and Brianna Davis (Rockford, Illinois).
The Georgia College Department of Athletics, two-time winners of the PBC Commissioner's Cup, sponsors 11 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 @GCBobcats on social media for up-to-the-minute reports, and visit GCBobcats.PhotoReflect.com to purchase photo prints from home athletic contests.