Men’s basketball survives scare with rival App State

Andrew Weimer

Georgia Southern traveled to the Carolinas where they would look to keep only 1-loss in Sun Belt play. In two close battles, the Eagles returned to Statesboro unscathed.

Coastal Carolina: 77-66

The weekend began Thursday in Conway, South Carolina for their matchup against the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers, who were 7-10 at the time.

Both teams played well to start the game, trading baskets early on. Halfway through the first half, the Eagles led 15-14, aided by an Ike Smith three ball.

As five minutes passed, GS found their rhythm, putting up a 7-0 run, with 5 of those points coming from Smith.

After the Chanticleers brought the game back within 4 points, the Eagles offense heated up, putting up a 9-0 run just before halftime.

By the end of the first half, the Eagles led by 11, the score being 37-26. Ike Smith led the Eagles in scoring at the half with 13 points, including 3 three-point jumpers.

The second half was evenly played by both teams. After ten minutes, the Chanticleers outscored the Eagles by 2 points, the score being 54-45, and at the end of regulation, the Eagles earned the victory, beating Coastal Carolina 77-66.

Three Eagles scored double digits. Junior guard Tookie Brown led the team in scoring with 22 points, going 3 of 4 from deep and shooting an overall 50 percent from the field.

Senior Ike Smith had an impressive outing, shooting 50 percent from deep while scoring a total 17 points. Junior forward Maurice Glenn continued his dominance on both sides of the ball, adding 7 boards to his overall 17 points.

App State: 60-59

On Saturday evening, GS traveled to Boone, North Carolina to take on rival, Appalachian State. Coming into this game, App State was 8-10, having lost only one game at home, and having a respectable 3-2 conference record.

This game would prove to be a hard-fought, personal, battle between the two teams, as this is their only meeting in the regular season.

At first, GS could not find the bottom of the net, not scoring until about four minutes into the half while allowing a 7-0 run on the defensive side of the ball. However, the Eagles heated up after a Tookie Brown and-1 jumper, tying the game at 7 with their own 7-0 run.

Throughout the rest of the half, the teams went back and forth, with no lead over 6 points and good defensive play by both teams. After 20 minutes, the Mountaineers led by a score of 25-21. Tookie Brown led the team in scoring with 10 points.

Appalachian State came out hot after halftime. After just four minutes of second half play, they had their first 10-point lead, and around three and a half minutes later, they posted their largest lead of the game, leading 46-34.

After this 12-point lead, Georgia Southern’s overall game clicked. With six minutes left to play in the game, freshman Quan Jackson stole the ball and dunked it on the other end, giving GS their first lead of the game, 52-51.

The game continued to be a back and forth offensive effort by both teams, and with 1:45 left in the second, Tookie Brown gave the Eagles a 58-57 lead with a jumper. Less than a minute later, the same man did the same thing, extending the lead to 3 points.

After a Mountaineers timeout, App State’s Isaac Johnson brought the game to within 1 point with 39 seconds to go.

With 7 seconds remaining, GS missed a layup, which was followed by a Mountaineers rebound, and as time expired, App State missed their final shot of the game, giving GS their fourth win in a row.

Junior guard, Tookie Brown, led the game in scoring, putting up 21 points to go along with 3 assists and 3 boards. Senior guard, Mike Hughes, also scored in the double digits, contributing 12 points and 3 rebounds to the Eagle win. Junior Montae Glenn played well on both sides of the ball, coming up 2 points and rebounds shy of a double-double.

What’s next?

Georgia Southern will face a tough test on the 20th, traveling to Atlanta to face Sun Belt rival, Georgia State. The game is slated to begin at 2:15 PM, and will be set to be played on ESPN 3 and can be listened to on Georgia Southern Sports Network. With this being their first edition of the in-state rivalry this season, GS will have to face the tough away crowd to try and extend their win streak to five games.