GAMEDAY: Bobcat Men Host Young Harris in PBC Division Action

>>>Full Notes

THE GAME
The Georgia College men's basketball team (5-7, 1-4 PBC) looks to snap a three-game loings streak Saturday, Jan. 11 at 3:30 p.m. when they host Young Harris College (9-2, 3-1 PBC) for Peach Belt Conference (PBC) West Division action. The Bobcats are 1-2 in home games this season, and are 2-2 on Saturday this season. Catch the action on Ustream and at the HomeTeam Country102FM and ESPN 1450AM; GC Hall of Famer Scott MacLeod and sports information student assistant Alex Cooper will bring you the call.

SERIES HISTORY
Against the most recent PBC addition, the Bobcats and Mountain Lions met for the first time last season on the hardwood, splitting action. The teams each took home victories, with the Bobcats winning 67-65 after dropping a 75-65 game in Young Harris, Ga.

LAST TIME OUT FOR THE 'CATS
The Georgia College men's basketball team (5-7, 1-4 PBC) lost by the slimmest of margins, 79-78 Wednesday night at Flagler College (8-4, 2-3 PBC).

Sophomore Ryan Blumenthal led the Bobcats with 21 points in the loss, including a three-pointer at the buzzer that cut a four-point Flagler lead to just one. He was 4-for-8 from long range, and 8-for-14 overall.

Reigning Bobcat Athlete of the Week Royal Thomas scored 16 points with seven rebounds and four assists, while junior Larrentis Thomas pulled in his fifth double-double of the year on 13 points and a game-high 10 rebounds.

A tight contest throughout, the teams were never more than two possessions apart for the entire game, the highest advantage for both teams reaching six.

SCOUTING THE MOUNTAIN LIONS
The Mountain Lions enter the game third in the PBC West Division, owning a 3-1 conference mark. Young Harris has won four of its last five, including a 76-68 victory at Clayton State University Wednesday. The Mountain Lions are second in the PBC in scoring, averaging 78.2 points per game, while ranking 10th in scoring defense (79.1). They are the top rebounding squad in the PBC at 42.8 per game.

Guard Issiah Johnson is the leading scorer for YHC and 10th in the league at 16.2 points per game and does a great job on both ends of the floor, ranking second in the PBC in steals at 28. The Mountain Lions have a total of five scorers that average double figures.

LAST TIME AGAINST YOUNG HARRIS
In a game that went right down to the wire, the Georgia College men's basketball team (7-10, 3-7 PBC) edged the top team in the PBC in Young Harris College (13-4, 8-2 PBC) 67-65 Jan. 27, 2013 at the Centennial Center.

YHC had its chances. A three-point basket by Malcom Jackson, the second leading scorer in the PBC, with 32 seconds left brought it to a one-possession game with Georgia College up 67-65. After a Bobcat turnover, the Mountain Lions led another fast break, and off a miss, a simple put-back would have tied the game.

Junior guard Royal Thomas skied to swat the wide-open, potentially game-tying layup, then scrambled for the rebound with nine seconds left. After another Young Harris foul resulted in a missed free-throw for the Bobcats, YHC's last-ditch three for the win went offline thanks to solid pressure from Thomas once again as time expired.

Senior Scott Ferguson led all scorers with 19 points to go with 12 rebounds, the forward's fourth double-double this season. Classmate Nate Hamilton had 12 points, including three long-range bombs.

THE COACH
Head coach Terry Sellers begins his 21st season at the helm of the Bobcat basketball team, owning a 344-228 (.601) record on the GC bench. Sellers picked up his 200th career PBC win against UNC Pembroke Jan. 3, 2013. He could pick up his 350th Georgia College win as early as Jan. 29 against Clayton State University at home.

CAN I HELP YOU?
Against the College of Coastal Georgia Dec. 22, senior point guard Aaron Robinson tallied an impressive 11 assists, just two off the school record set by Shejdie Childs in the 2006-07 season. The last time a Bobcat had more than 11 assists was Ty Rowland's 12 in the 2008-09 campaign. In the NCAA era of GC men's basketball, only Childs, Rowland and Bryan Harrison have recorded more than 11 assists in a game.

In that game alone, Robinson passed both Keb Burley and Marcus Langston to take ninth in Georgia College history for career assists. Robinson's now stands at 235,  ranking 22 behind Childs and eighth place all-time. At his current rate of 3.7 assists per game, Robinson would pass Childs in seven games, or Jan. 29 at home against Clayton State University.

CLEANING THE GLASS
The Bobcats have the fourth-most rebounds per game in the PBC at 40.7 per contest. Georgia College also owns a +2.4 rebounding margin on the year, ranking seventh in the league. Georgia College's best rebounding effort was 58 in the triple-overtime loss to Albany State. That game also featured the season's best margin thus far at +15.

After starting the season with a -10 effort against Clark Atlanta, the Bobcats REBOUNDED [eh, see what I did there?] with a +15, +8 and +3. Georgia College has the No. 5 and No. 20 rebounders in the conference in Larrentis Thomas (8.9) and Terrell Harris (6.0).

NUMBERS WATCH
-Royal Thomas is 15 rebounds from 200 in his career at Georgia College.

-Aaron Robinson needs 25 more points for for 400.

-David Wagner needs 15 more points for 200.

"FREE" - STYLE
Ryan Blumenthal is 35-for-39 from the free-throw line this season, hitting for a 89.7 percentage. Should this torrid pace hold up for the sophomore, he will edge the school record of 89.5 set by Mike Brown during the 1995-96 season. Brown went 85-for-95 that year. In order to qualify for the percentage mark, a player must average 2.5 attempts per game, and Blumenthal is at 3.3 per contest right now. Junior David Wagner missed his first free-throw of the season Jan. 4 against North Georgia, and now leaves freshman Kelvin Nwanze with the title of Mr. Perfect at 8-for-8 on the year.

REGAL IMPROVEMENTS
Senior guard Royal Thomas continues to show marked improvement over his previous efforts, closing his career with a bang. He already has posted 10 games with 10-plus scoring, where in his previous three seasons he had just six total. He put up 26 against Coastal Georgia, matched that number against North Georgia, and also had his first double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds against Albany State. His 13.8 points per game are 7.8 more per contest than last season, and 5.3 rebounds are 2.6 more than last year.

UP NEXT
The Bobcats hit the road to the University of North Georgia Wednesday, Jan. 15 at 7:30 p.m.  The Bobcats will look to avenge a Jan. 4 loss to the Nighthawks, 85-77 at home.