By: Reid Van Woert, Sports Information Graduate Assistant
AIKEN, S.C. – The Georgia College Men's Basketball team (8-4, 2-1 PBC) was victorious Wednesday afternoon taking down the Pacers of USC Aiken (6-4, 0-3 PBC) in an exciting Peach Belt Conference (PBC) contest, 74-67. Junior Desmond Mitchell-LaFlam (New Smyrna Beach, Florida) had a huge day, recording a career high 17 points, eight assists, six rebounds and three steals leading the Bobcats to a their second-consecutive PBC win.
USC Aiken was in control at the start, leading the Bobcats in the first half up until the 13-minute mark. Georgia College fought back when sophomore Chaz Berry (Fayetteville, Georgia) and junior Isaac Thomas (Trion, Georgia) worked some easy buckets and put together a run of seven unanswered points, giving the Bobcats a 23-16 advantage with eight minutes remaining in the half. The Pacers cut the deficit to one with five minutes to go, but a break-away layup from Berry sparked a 14-4 run by the Bobcats ending in an 11-point lead heading into the break.
The run at the end of the first half gave Georgia College all the breathing room they needed to seal the road victory over the Pacers. The Bobcats maintained their lead throughout the early part of the second half, although USC Aiken did make a run to get within three with nine minutes remaining. Things really started to heat up when the Pacers cut the Bobcat lead to just two with just 1:20 left, but a free-throw each from Mitchell-LaFlam and Berry and a fast break dunk from freshman Garrick DeBowles (Marietta, Georgia) assured the win for Georgia College.
Berry finished his afternoon with a solid 14 points and three rebounds, two steals and an assist coming off the bench. Junior Brice Booker (Atlanta, Georgia) and Thomas also had nice performances, Booker tallying nine points and four rebounds with a pair of blocks, while Thomas posted nine points eight boards two steals and two blocks.
The win makes it three straight for the Bobcats who are now 2-1 in PBC conference play. They look to continue their winning streak when they visit the UNC Pembroke Braves Saturday, Jan. 7 at 3:30 p.m.
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.