February 16, 2013

Hurricane Homecoming Soured By Augusta State

AMERICUS - The Augusta State men's basketball team slowly and methodically broke down Georgia Southwestern on Saturday afternoon in the Storm Dome and spoiled the Hurricanes homecoming festivities, 52-43, in Peach Belt Conference action.

GSW has its five-game winning streak snapped and falls back to .500 at 12-12 overall. The Hurricanes are 8-9 in PBC play and tied with Clayton State for the No. 3 seed out of the west division for the conference tournament in March. Augusta State improves to 12-10 overall and 7-8 in the PBC.

ASU set the pace early by spreading the floor and allowing most of the shot clock to tick down on each possession before moving play towards the basket. The strategy worked. The Hurricanes largest lead of the afternoon came just over two minutes into the game when Jamon Hawkins buried a 3-pointer to put GSW up 5-2. From there the Jaguars jumped ahead and eventually built a seven-point lead, 27-20, in time for the halftime break.

GSW was held to six field goals over the opening 20 minutes, three of which came from beyond the arc. Hawkins and Daryl Dawkins accounted for 17 of GSW's 20 first-half points.

The second half saw more of the same for both sides.

A 3-point basket by Ryan Weems on ASU's opening possession of the second stanza pushed the margin to double digits as the Hurricanes trailed 30-20. The visitor's largest lead of the night came a few minutes later when a Michael Graham layup put ASU ahead 35-24 at the 16:52 mark.

GSW answered with an 11-0 run over the following four minutes to tie the score at 35-35.

The Jaguars ended the run and regained the lead for good with 11:33 to play.

ASU closed the game on a 9-2 run over the final 5:47.

The Hurricanes finished with their fewest field goals of the season (15) to go with a season-low shooting percentage (37.5). Even though GSW grabbed its fewest rebounds of the 2012-13 campaign, the Hurricanes still held the edge over ASU on Saturday, 26-20.

Matt Shaw led Southwestern with 14 points and a game-high seven rebounds. Davis added 12 points and pair of blocks.

Weems posted a game-high 18 points for ASU. Devon Wright-Nelson scored 11 and D'Angelo Boyce chipped in 10.

The Hurricanes wrap up the road portion of their conference schedule on Saturday (2/23) when they travel to Clayton State for a 7:30 p.m. contest.