Cougars Claw Their Way Back, Best Bobcats 56-51
Columbus – The Columbus State men's basketball team rallied from a 15-point deficit to take down visiting Georgia College 56-51 Wednesday night in a Peach Belt Conference tilt in the Lumpkin Center.
CSU ups its PBC record to 2-1 and 7-5 overall while the Bobcats fall to 7-4 on the year and remain winless in the conference with a 0-2 mark.
Georgia College got out of the gates fast knocking down seven of their first 10 shots including four three-pointers to take an 18-6 led just over seven minutes into the contest. They were able to maintain a hefty lead throughout the first half which included a 35-20 advantage with just under four minutes remaining in the opening 20 minutes, the largest lead of the game for either side.
Columbus State was able to keep them scoreless the remainder of the half and added three points of their own to enter the break down 12, 35-23.
Although the Cougars were on pace with their defensive season average allowing 35 points in the opening half, they came out a different and determined team out of the locker rooms. They held Georgia College to just two points in the first 10:19 of action in the second half and only 16 in the entire final 20 points of play.
With CSU down 46-38 with 6:36 to go in regulation, they had one of their most impressive runs of the year over the next four minutes outscoring GC 14-0. Winford Ivey keyed the spurt with five points while Paul Darkwa, Steve Peterson and Bell each adding three points apiece.
The Bobcats wouldn't go away quietly as they rattled off five straight points including a three point basket by Aaron Robinson with 55 seconds left to bring them to within one, 52-51.
After a missed shot on the offensive end for Columbus State, Darkwa was able to secure the offensive rebound with 21 seconds to go. The senior calmly stroked both free throw attempts putting CSU ahead 54-51.
Ivey's defensive pressure forced a turnover on the ensuing GC possession and the guard was able to race up court before being fouled with only five seconds on the clock. He sunk both attempts from the charity stripe to secure the comeback victory.
Bell paced the Cougars offensive attack netting a game high 17 points including a pair of three-pointers. His first basket of the night, a three-pointer, put the junior over the 1,000 point plateau for his career. He currently has 1,015 points in his collegiate career. Steve Peterson was the only other player for CSU to hit double figures chipping in with 11 points.
As a team, Columbus State helped themselves tremendously from the free throw line going 16-for-20. They also held a 39-34 advantage on the glass.
Georgia College was led by Quin Bivins who netted 16 points and Ryan Aquino who added 10 points. Aquino also grabbed a game high 15 rebounds for the double-double.
Columbus State will hit the road this weekend as they travel to Aiken, SC to take on the Pacers in a key PBC matchup. Tip-off is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. in the Convocation Center.