COLUMBUS, Ga. - The Georgia Southwestern men's basketball team had every intention of playing the role of spoiler in a must-win game for Columbus State University on Wednesday evening in the Frank G. Lumpkin Jr. Center by jumping out to a 15-point first half lead, but CSU rallied to defeat the Hurricanes, 88-75.
GSW had its best night of the season from long range, draining 11 of 22 attempts (50 percent) from beyond the arc, but it wasn't enough to hold off the Cougars.
GSW closed out its season on a six-game losing skid and finished 7-19 overall, 5-14 in the Peach Belt Conference, while Columbus State improved to 18-8 overall and 11-8 in the PBC to finish in a five-way tie for the west division regular season championship.
Back-to-back 3-point baskets by Tevin Wise capped an early 18-3 run that put the Hurricanes ahead, 22-8, with 11:49 remaining in the first half. The Hurricanes were perfect from the field during that stretch making 7 of 7, including all four attempts from long range.
A Colt Yawn 3-pointer with 10:21 on the clock gave GSW its largest lead of the game, 26-11. From there Columbus State slowly chipped away at the lead and at the break GSW was ahead by four points, 37-33.
Columbus State scored the first six points of the second half to jump back on top, but Wise put the Hurricanes ahead with a 3-pointer at the 17:20 mark and GSW did not trail for the next five minutes.
The Cougars regained the lead with 12:12 to play on a Ryan Burnett 3-pointer and GSW would never recover. Columbus State built the margin to 10 points with seven minutes to go and held off one final GSW run. The Hurricanes made it a five-point game after Tyrone Wooten hit three free throws with 4:50 left, but Columbus State iced the game with a 10-0 run in the closing minutes.
Wooten, a senior, closed out his collegiate career by leading the Hurricanes with 18 points. He made 11 of 13 from the free throw line. Wise sank 5 of 7 from behing the arc en route to his 17-point evening. Devin Watson scored 10 of his 12 points in the first half and senior Cameron Dozier added 11. Rakeem Hicks grabbed a game-high nine rebounds.
All five Columbus State starters scored in double figures led by Burnett with 18, of which 17 came in the second half. Darius Joell added 17 points while Jacori Payne scored 15 and dished out eight assists.