by Mark Jagord, sports information assistant
MORROW, Ga. – The Georgia College women's basketball team (15-7, 8-7 PBC) had one of its best starts of the season before falling to Clayton State University (17-5, 12-3 PBC), 82-77 Monday at the Clayton State Athletics Center. Junior Enisha Donley (Loganville, Ga.) led the team in points, rebounds, assists and steals.
Donley registered a career-high in points with 26 and added nine boards, six assists and four steals for a stellar game for the Bobcats. Senior Brandi McKinney (Cincinnati) accounted for 20 points but it wasn't enough to snap the Lakers' nine-game win streak.
Also solid for the Bobcats was junior Belinda Schaafsma (Momence, Ill.) who had eight points and rebounds. Senior Abby Slocumb (Suwanee, Ga.) had her five-game streak of three blocks snapped, getting only two.
The first half was marked by scoring runs by both sides. Georgia College got out of the gate quickly with a 12-0 lead. The Lakers responded with a 16-3 run to take a 16-15 lead. The Bobcats got the next seven and the Lakers countered with the next eight. A McKinney layup with over four minutes left in the first gave the Bobcats their last lead at 26-24. In the final four minutes of the half, Shacamra Jackson's eight points and Tiayra Green's two threes would give the Lakers a 38-35 lead at the break.
Clayton State got 17 second-half free throws, shooting nearly 95 percent at the charity stripe to keep their lead throughout the game. The Bobcats got within five points six different times in the final six minutes of the game before finally losing by five.
The Lakers were led by Green's 23 with 15 coming from beyond the arc. Jackson and Bena Hayword added 14 apiece, while Kiana Morton chipped in 10.
Georgia College moves to 8-7 in conference play, remaining in fifth in a tough Peach Belt Conference (PBC) West Division, where five of the seven teams have winning conference records. The top four in the division advance to the PBC Tournament in March, and with Young Harris College ineligible for postseason play, the Bobcats hold the final spot in the West.
The Bobcats will have a rematch with Clayton State Wednesday, Feb. 19 for a PBC tilt starting at 5:30 p.m. in the Centennial Center.
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 Twitter and Facebook for up-to-the-minute reports, and visit GCBobcats.PhotoReflect.com to purchase photo prints from home athletic contests.