ASU Men Survive A Scare, Advance in Regionals

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News 12 @ 11 Saturday March 15, 2008
AUGUSTA, Ga. -- The second-seeded Augusta State Jaguars had their lowest scoring output of the season, but it was still enough to hold off seventh-seeded Johnson C. Smith 58-54 in the quarterfinals of the NCAA South Atlantic Region tournament. With the win, the Jaguars (23-6) advance to Sunday’s semifinals where they will meet third-seeded Wingate.

Tyrekus ‘AJ’ Bowman put up nearly 40 percent of ASU’s points as he scored 22 to go with 11 rebounds. Garret Siler also had a double-double with 13 points and 11 boards while Ben Madgen added 11 for the Jaguars. ASU shot 40 percent (23-62) for the game but hit only five of 20 three-point attempts. For Bowman, the double-double marked his fifth of the season while Siler tallied his 10th of the 2007-08 campaign.

Jerry Hollis led the Golden Bulls with 14 points on 6-of-13 shooting to go with 11 rebounds. Ryan Scott also scored 14 with four rebounds and three steals while Edmund Rainey added 11 and seven boards. Johnson C. Smith (21-10) struggled from the field, hitting 23-62 (37%) and three of 13 three-pointers.

Augusta State jumped out early with a 23-10 run to open the game, capped by four straight points from Madgen. That lead grew to as many as 14 with 4:26 to play after a Bowman jumper before the Golden Bulls answered with shots from Rainey and Dante Drummer to cut the lead to 33-22 at the half.

Johnson C. Smith began the second half with a 7-2 run highlighted by a driving layup from Rainey. That was part of a larger 25-17 Golden Bulls run that cut the lead to 50-47 following three straight layups from Hollis and a three-pointer from Scott with 7:12 to play. Hollis struck again later on as JCS cut the lead to one 52-51, but Garret Siler answered with a turnaround jumper in the lane with 1:36 to play. Following a Rainey free throw that cut ASU’s lead to two with under a minute to play, Ben Madgen hit two free throws to put the lead back to four.

Johnson C. Smith cut the lead to two with 14 seconds left as Scott drove the lane for a nearly uncontested layup. Following the foul, Bowman hit both free throws to ice the game.

ASU’s previous low was 62 scored against Clayton State in a loss in the PBC Tournament. The 54 points scored by JCS was also a season-low for the CIAA Tournament champions, who also saw their seven-game winning streak come to end.