March 1, 2014

GAMEDAY: Bobcat Men Close Season Saturday

>>>Full Notes

THE GAME
The Georgia College men's basketball team (9-16, 5-13 PBC) looks to close out the season on a win Saturday, March 1 at 3:30 p.m. traveling to Armstrong Atlantic State University (8-17, 5-13 PBC) in Peach Belt Conference (PBC) crossover action. Catch the action on the HomeTeam Country102FM and ESPN 1450AM; GC Hall of Famer Scott MacLeod and women's basketball assistant coach Toby Wagoner will bring you the call. The Bobcats are 2-9 on the road this year, and 4-6 in Saturday games.

SERIES HISTORY
The Bobcats and the Pirates have met 64 times on the hardwood, with Armstrong owning a 39-25 advantage in the all-time series. The Pirates won last season's meeting in Milledgeville, Ga. 73-68, and own a two-game streak within the series.

LAST TIME OUT FOR THE 'CATS
The Georgia College men's basketball team (9-16, 5-13 PBC) saw a second-half lead slowly fade away, eventually falling to Lander University (17-10, 11-7 PBC) 74-69 in overtime Wednesday at the Centennial Center.

The Bobcats led by as many as nine in the second half, but Lander wouldn't quit, eventually tying the game on a miraculous four-point play by Mike Lee with three seconds left.

The Bearcats would take over in the overtime period, out-scoring Georgia College 13-8, getting points from four different players to get the win.

Sophomore Terrell Harris led the Bobcats with 19 points, hitting half of his shots overall (6-12) and from long range (3-6). He added six rebounds to his effort. With 13 points and 10 rebounds, junior Larrentis Thomas tallied his 10th double-double of the season, adding three blocks.

Senior Royal Thomas had a big second half, netting 12 of his 18 points after the break, adding a game-high five assists, four rebounds and three steals. Royal Thomas now owns a double-digit scoring streak of 18 games. Classmate Aaron Robinson posted nine points, six boards and three assists in his final game at the Centennial Center.

SCOUTING THE PIRATES
The Pirates take the court at last in the PBC East Division, with a 5-13 conference record. Armstrong enters today's game off a win off two straight losses, and four defeats in its last five. The Pirates are ninth in the league in scoring at 74.9 points per game, but allow 81.8 points per contest, second to last in the PBC. Armstrong excels on the boards, ranking tops in the league at 42.4 rebounds per game, and second in rebound margin at +6.3.

Senior guard Hichem Benayad-Cherif is tops on his team and 13th in the Peach Belt in scoring at 15.2 points per game. The Pirates do boast the leading rebounder in the league in Eric Eversley, pulling in 10.2 rebounds per contest.

LAST TIME OUT AGAINST THE PIRATES
The season came to a close for Georgia College men's basketball (9-17, 5-14 PBC) but not without a fight March 2, 2013, as the Bobcats lost to Armstrong (15-11, 11-8 PBC) 73-68 in overtime at the Centennial Center.  

Forward Scott Ferguson wowed the home crowd with 28 points, matching his career high in the final game for the senior. Ferguson hit three from long range and went 7-of-8 from the charity stripe, adding a team-high seven rebounds to boot.

An Aric Miller jumper for the Pirates knotted the score at 64-64 with 44 seconds left. Each team had a shot at the game-winner, with neither squad finding the bottom of the net again in regulation.

In overtime, Aaron Robinson brought the team within one at 69-68 on a layup with two minutes left.  Miller responded with another jumper to push the lead back to three, and after a Bobcat miss, free-throws pushed the lead out of reach in the waning seconds. Robinson would finish with four points.

THE COACH
Head coach Terry Sellers begins his 21st season at the helm of the Bobcat basketball team, owning a 348-237 (.595) record on the GC bench. Sellers picked up his 200th career PBC win against UNC Pembroke Jan. 3, 2013.

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. He has since passed Childs,  Harrison and Darrell Flowers to now stand at 298, ranking 11 behind John John Steensland and fifth place all-time. Robinson also ranks third in assists during the NCAA era of men's basketball at Georgia College.

FREE - STYLE
Ryan Blumenthal is 63-for-70 from the free-throw line this season, hitting for a 90.0 percentage. The sophomore is slightly above the school's single-season 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 2.8 per contest right now.

SHOOTING TELLS THE TALE
To find the success rate for Bobcat men's basketball, just check opponent shooting percentage.  Opponents hit 39 percent (215-548) of their shots in Bobcat wins, to 47 percent (439-931 ) in Georgia College losses. The best opponent shooting percentage of the season came in a loss at UNC Pembroke Jan. 2, where the Braves hit .569 of their shots. The Bobcats' best defensive effort was Nov. 11 against Clark Atlanta at .318.

Bobcat free-throw shooting also plays a crucial role, as Georgia College is 70.9 percent in wins and 68.3 percent in losses.

GOING OUT WITH A BANG?
The Bobcats are 3-2 in their last five season finales, picking up a pair of wins over North Georgia and one over USC Aiken, while adding losses to Clayton State and Armstrong.