Monday, January 19, 2009.
AIKEN, S.C. – Josh Dollard was one of two Pacers to score 20 or more points in No. 10 USC Aiken’s 78-74 rivalry victory over No. 7 Augusta State before a capacity crowd of 3,569 fans at the Convocation Center on Monday evening.
The crowd of 3,569 was the most ever at a USC Aiken home athletic event.
Dollard (Hemingway, S.C./Auburn) picked up his fourth double-double of the 2008-09 season in the Pacers victory over their rival. Dollard scored 23 points in total. He collected 11 rebounds in the win.
Dollard started off slow in the game, but after shaking off a little rustiness in the opening minutes he went on to finish the game 6-for-7 from the free throw line and 8-of-17 from the floor. He also had one block.
Chris Commons (Toledo, Ohio/Findlay) scored 20 or more for the eighth time in the 2008-09 season in the win over the Jaguars, knocking down seven of his 16 shots to acquire 20 points. Commons was 4-for-6 from the charity stripe. He had two blocks in the game.
The Pacers had three players in double figures in total with Javonte Clanton (Columbus, Ohio/Blinn) posting 15 points for USC Aiken. Clanton was successful on eight of his 10 free throws in the game.
The Jaguars also had two players score over 20 in the loss with Garret Siler scoring 22 in the game and Ben Madgen chipping in 20. Siler only missed one shot from the floor in the contest, connecting on six of his seven shot attempts. He was 10-for-11 from the free throw line.
Madgen just missed two shots (5-for-7) in the loss. He had four steals and eight rebounds.
USC Aiken concluded the Augusta State victory shooting 40.7 percent (24-for-59). Augusta State shot 47.8 percent (22-for-46) in the loss to the Pacers.
The game started out with neither team really able to break away from one another. When one would take the lead, the other team would claw its way back and either tie the contest or take the lead.
The Pacers shot just 33.2 percent in the first half, but still managed to find itself down by only two points at halftime (33-31).
In a game where the score was tied five times and the lead changed hands 11 times, the Pacers would outscore Augusta State, 47-41, in the second half to emerge with the four-point victory.
A large chunk of the Pacers victory could be attributed to the effort of the USC Aiken bench with Dollard and the rest of the USCA bench outscoring ASU’s bench by a hefty 39-11 margin.
The USC Aiken victory has important implications with each team now owning a home victory in the two top 10 showdowns this year.
The win on Monday by USC Aiken in front of the tremendous crowd gave USC Aiken sole possession of first place of the Peach Belt Conference currently. In their bid to defend their 2007-08 Peach Belt Conference crown, USC Aiken had entered the game a half-game behind Augusta State.
With the victory over Augusta State, USC Aiken now stands as the only one loss team in the tough PBC.
The Pacers are now 11-3 overall and 6-1 in the PBC. Augusta State is 12-3 and 6-2 in the PBC.
The win on Monday also not only improves the Pacers record, but it extends their impressive home regular season record to 20-0 since moving into the Convocation Center prior to the 2007-08 campaign.
The Pacers are a perfect 14-0 against PBC foes during the regular season during the time frame.