Eagles Fall at Furman
STATESBORO, Ga. - Senior guard Antonio Hanson led Georgia Southern in scoring for the second straight game with 13 points, but the Eagles struggled from the field against Furman, falling 45-69 at Timmons Arena Saturday afternoon (January 16). Furman had two players in double figures with forward Amu Saaka as a game-high scorer with 16 points and guard Jordan Miller adding 15. Saaka and Chris Toler each pulled down a game-high nine rebounds. Colby Wohlleb (Boca Raton, Fla.) finished with six rebounds, five coming in the second half, as the top total for the Eagles.
Hanson scored 10 of his 13 points in the second half, hitting five field goals, including one three pointer. All seven of the points scored by Willie Powers III (Gainesville, Fla.) came at the free throw line where he hit 7-8 to bring his free throw percentage up to 84.0 percent for the season.
"One of our goals was to keep people under 40 percent field goal shooting and I have said that if we do that, we should have a chance to win," said Eagles Head Coach Charlton "C.Y." Young. "Today's game was about us, we weren't able to make shots and then it can turn into a chain reaction. We can't let our guys get discouraged. When you don't see the ball go in the basket, it gets tough. We are going to keep fighting to get better and make things happen."
Georgia Southern (4-15, 1-5 SoCon) connected on only five of its 26 attempts in the first half for 19.2 percent while Furman (9-3, 3-3 SoCon) shot 48 percent from the field with seven treys to the Eagles one. The Eagles held Furman to only 32.3 percent shooting in the second half, but could not light the spark on their own shooting inside the paint or behind the three-point arc. Georgia Southern improved in the second half, hitting nine field goals off 31 attempts, but could not get the treys to fall.
Foul trouble for the front line also put Georgia Southern at a disadvantage early as the Eagles had to sit Spencer, Troupe and Baskerville for spells to avoid putting them out of the game permanently. Both Troupe and Spencer fouled out with Baskerville and Wohlleb playing with four fouls each. The Paladins took advantage, crashing on the boards with a 54-32 rebounding difference.
The Eagles caused 22 Paladin turnovers and had 13 steals, but could not convert them into points for their own cause. Johntavious Rucker (Decatur, Ga.) had six of the Eagles' 13 steals on the night, which puts his season total at 50 and provided a boost to his steals per game national ranking. Furman scored 24 points off GSU turnovers (15).
Tied 6-6 after the first five minutes, Furman hit a hot streak, scoring 24 points to the Eagles four. Wohlleb hit two jumpers and Powers added two free throws, but the big run had given the Paladins a cushion for the remainder of the half. Furman led at halftime, 36-17.
Georgia Southern came out of the locker room with a quick score from Antoine Johnson (Atlanta, Ga.), and added a basket and free throw from Spencer and two Powers free throws to keep the scoring even in the first four minutes of the half. Furman's Justin Dehm would score seven of its next nine points and Hanson countered with six straight points, but the Eagles could not overcome the first-half deficit. In the final six minutes, Georgia Southern made three baskets and scored 11 points to the Paladin's five.
The Eagles return home to play in Hanner Fieldhouse for four straight games beginning Wednesday, January 20th when Appalachian State comes to town. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. and fans who bring an empty Coca-Cola product to the game can trade it in for a $1 ticket.
- Category: Men's Basketball
- Published on Saturday, 16 January 2010 22:06