Doubleheader sweep by USC Aiken

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AMERICUS, Ga. – In a battle of league unbeatens, the University of South Carolina Aiken men’s basketball team remained perfect in Peach Belt Conference play with a 67-64 road win over Georgia Southwestern on Thursday evening at the Storm Dome.

The game started with neither team really able to claim any separation over the first 10 minutes with the score knotted at 14-14.

USC Aiken (7-3, 3-0 PBC) would then go on a short 6-3 run over the next two and a half minutes to go ahead by three at 20-17.

The two teams would enter intermission with the game tied at 30-30.

USC Aiken closed out the first half shooting 44.4 percent (12-for-27) as a team. Georgia Southwestern (6-4, 2-1 PBC) shot 55 percent (11-for-20) from the field as a team in the first stanza.

Seven different Pacers scored in the first half with Paul Larsen leading the way with eight points.

With just over 10 minutes to play in the second half, Georgia Southwestern owned a narrow one-point lead over USC Aiken at 46-45.

Behind a 3-pointer by Santoine Butler (Augusta, Ga./Gardner-Webb) and two consecutive treys by Kinley Branch (Stone Mountain, Ga./Arkansas State) the Pacers were able to go on a quick 9-0 run to take a 54-46 advantage with 8:51 to play in the second half.

Georgia Southwestern would then battle its way back into the contest and the game would be tied at 59-all with 4:17 left in the second stanza.

USC Aiken would then go on 8-2 run to pull ahead by six points at 67-61 with 2:43 left in the contest.

The Pacers would be held scoreless the rest of the way, but Jamon Hawkins’ 3-point attempt at the buzzer for Georgia Southwestern to send the game into overtime would fall short to allow USC Aiken to secure the three-point win.

In total, USC Aiken held Georgia Southwestern without a field goal for the final 5:18 of the game. Georgia Southwestern’s final eight points of the game would come at the free throw line.

MERICUS, Ga. – The nationally third-ranked University of South Carolina Aiken women’s basketball team showed no ill effects from its 15-day holiday hiatus in a 84-51 Peach Belt Conference victory over Georgia Southwestern on Thursday evening at the Storm Dome.

The win helped the Pacers improve to a perfect 10-0 on the 2012-13 season. In the midst of the best start in program history, the Pacers are now 3-0 in Peach Belt Conference action.

USC Aiken at 10-0 presently is now just two wins away from tying the 2011-12 Pacer squad for the longest winning streak in program history. The 2011-12 Pacers won 12 straight games from Nov. 12, 2011-Jan. 16, 2012.

USC Aiken behind three 3-pointers from Daniela Tarailo opened the contest on an 11-4 run over the course of the first two and a half minutes of the contest. Tarailo’s third trey of the game forced Georgia Southwestern into a time out with a little over 17 minutes remaining in the first half.

Tarailo (Crown Point, Ind./Crown Point HS) would continue to pile up the early points with her 14 points in the opening minutes of the game along with six points from Kayla Harris (Raleigh, N.C./Wakefield HS) helping to guide the Pacers to a 20-6 advantage with just under 15 minutes to play in the first stanza.

The Pacers would eventually extend their lead to as many as 34 points in the first half before entering intermission with a 51-20 advantage.

USC Aiken closed out the first stanza shooting 54.1 percent (20-for-37) as a team. The Pacers held Georgia Southwestern (2-8, 0-3 PBC) to just 28.6 percent (8-for-28) shooting as a team in the first half.

Both Tarailo (18) and Harris (10) closed out the first half in double figures.

Brittany Hill (Mechanicsville, Va./Quinnipiac) assisted on 10 of USC Aiken’s 20 made field goals as a team in the first half.

The second half would be much more competitive, but the Pacers nevertheless had still pushed their lead to 35 points at 82-47 with 3:21 remaining in the contest.

USC Aiken would go on to outscore Georgia Southwestern, 33-31, in the second half.