Men's Basketball Rallies for Win over Chattanooga
The Eagles remain perfect in the Southern Conference at 2-0 and 4-6 overall. The Mocs drop to 0-2 in the league and 4-9 overall.
“I was really proud of our guys,” said GSU head coach Jeff Price. “We dug a hole late in the second half and I told them that’s what a lot of heart and grit will do for you. We kept plugging away and played really, really hard. One of the things I’m pleased with most is that we’ve got a new team and we looked like it and we played a team that starts five seniors and is really experienced. I thought we showed good poise down the stretch.”
Junior Antonio Hanson (Fort Worth, Texas) led all players with 22 points, shooting 6-for-12 from 3-point land. Sophomore Willie Powers (Gainesville, Fla.) added 17 and a game-best five assists and senior Trumaine Pearson (Stuart, Fla.) came off the bench to post 15 points and seven rebounds. It was his first double-digit scoring game since Nov. 14.
“Trumaine is the X-factor for us,” said Price. “He’s fighting consistency. It’s so obvious that if we can get him to be consistent we can be a really good basketball team. He played like that the first game of the year against Houston and we won. Our guards are pretty explosive so if we can get some inside presence we have a chance to be pretty good. We have to see it every night.”
Chattanooga led by as many as 10 in the second half and was up nine with 5:52 to play. Georgia Southern closed out the game on an 18-5 run and went 4-for-4 from the foul line in the final 26 seconds.
“We went small,’” said Price. “We started switching everything and I thought it bothered them a little bit and allowed us to get on their shooters some. It put them back on their heels a little and they weren’t able to be as aggressive.”
Back-to-back 3s from Hanson and Pearson erased a six-point deficit and a short jumper by Powers gave the Eagles the lead at 74-72. It was the team’s first lead since the 2:26 mark of the first half.
The Mocs missed five of their last six shots from the floor and their last three from the foul line.
UTC’s Stephen McDowell, the SoCon’s second-leading scorer entering the night, was held to five points through the first 29 minutes of the contest but finished with 17, sharing team-high honors with Keyron Sheard. Kevin Goffney notched a double-double with 13 points and 14 rebounds.
The Eagles’ senior Julian Allen (Waterbury, Conn.) set a new career high with 12 rebounds.
Georgia Southern returns to the court Thursday for a game at The Citadel. Tip-off is scheduled for 6 p.m.
- Category: Men's Basketball
- Published on Saturday, 03 January 2009 00:07