Georgia Southern Men's Basketball Faces Auburn Saturday
STATESBORO, Ga. - For Georgia Southern, the end of the road is within sight. After playing seven of the last eight games on the road, the final away game of this stretch will be in the books when the Eagles play at Auburn Saturday. Tipoff is scheduled for 2 p.m. Eastern time. The game at Beard-Eaves Memorial Coliseum will be broadcast live locally on WPMX 102.9 FM and globally on www.GeorgiaSouthernEagles.com. Chris Blair provides the play-by-play call with John Koon lending analysis for Eagle men's basketball. The pre-game show begins 30 minutes prior to the start of the game.
Auburn leads the series 3-0 with the last meeting during the 2000-01 season at Beard-Eaves Memorial Coliseum. During that year, the Tigers bench featured assistant coach Charlton "C.Y." Young, the current head coach of Georgia Southern. Former Auburn head coach Cliff Ellis gave Young his first coaching opportunity and Young served under Ellis with the Tigers from 1995-1997 and again from 2000-2004. During his first stint at Auburn, Young met Carolyn Jones, a two-time All-America selection, who led the Tigers to two national championship game appearances. Recognized as one of the top basketball players ever to play at Auburn, and even with her number 21 jersey listed as one of three honored by the women's program, Carolyn will be wearing blue and white and rooting for Georgia Southern.
The Tigers are 7-6 and riding a two-game win streak after defeating Alabama State, 94-78, on Dec. 22nd and Charleston Southern, 77-62, Tuesday night. Senior forward Lucas Hargrove registered a double-double with 20 points and 13 rebounds. The Buccaneers had a five-point lead, 22-17, at the 7:53 mark of the first half, but Auburn pushed to a 26-24 lead and kept battling past the ties to take the lead for good with 1:39 left in the period. Auburn outscored Charleston Southern 41-29 in the second half and held the Buccaneers to 35.5 percent shooting from the field, after they hit 57.1 percent in the first half. The Tigers also caused 22 Buccaneer turnovers.
Four Tigers are averaging double figures in points with senior guard DeWayne Reed (15.3) , Hargrove(13.7) and sophomore guard Frankie Sullivan (13.5) while starting all 13 games. Senior guard Tay Waller is fourth at 13.0 points per game and has started six of seven contests after missing the first six games of the season. Reed accounts for 4.2 assists per game and Hargrove tops all Tiger rebounders with 7.5 per contest.
"This is another game, against an SEC opponent, that will help us prepare for our upcoming conference season," said Head Coach Charlton "C.Y." Young. "We are coming to the end of our first 'season' and our glaring deficiency is on the defensive end of the floor. This has got to change in order for us to compete for a conference championship."
Auburn and Georgia Southern have both lost to N.C. State this season, with the Tigers falling to the Wolfpack, 58-60, in the Glenn Wilkes Classic in November. Auburn lost to Troy, 77-81, while the Eagles defeated the Trojans, 80-77. After its final non-conference game against West Georgia on Tuesday, Auburn will play host to South Carolina next Saturday. Georgia Southern lost to the Gamecocks in its second game of the season.
Sophomores Ben Drayton III (St. Marys, Ga.) and Colby Wohlleb (Boca Raton, Fla.) led the Eagles (3-11) against Coastal Carolina on Tuesday night with the Chanticleers coming out on top, 76-64. Drayton scored all 17 of his points in the second half and Wohlleb set career bests with five three-point baskets for 15 points. Senior forward Tyler Troupe (Gallatin, Tenn.) was the top rebounder for Georgia Southern for the third time this year, grabbing seven rebounds. For the first time in 11 games, junior guard Willie Powers III (Gainesville, Fla.) did not score in double figures, but leads the Eagles at 13.4 points per contest. Senior guard Antonio Hanson ranks second at 11.4 ppg and Drayton checks in at 10.5 ppg. Junior guard Johntavious Rucker (Decatur, Ga.) leads the Eagles on the boards with 5.7 per game.
Following the Auburn game Saturday, the Eagles return to play six of their next eight games at Hanner Fieldhouse. Georgia Southern's first game back at home features a Southern Conference tilt with Chattanooga on Wednesday, January 6 at 7 p.m. All Junior Eagle Club members will be admitted free.
- Category: Men's Basketball
- Published on Friday, 01 January 2010 12:05