November 26, 2011

Saints Fall to Argonauts in UWF Thanksgiving Classic Finale

PENSACOLA, FL – The North Georgia men's basketball team fell 73-63 to host West Florida in the final game of the West Florida Thanksgiving Classic held at the UWF Fieldhouse.

The Saints fall to 4-2 on the season while the Argos won their third straight contest to move to 5-2 on the year. 

North Georgia struggled to gain momentum in the early stages of the game with turnovers on their first two possessions and West Florida took advantage and grabbed an early lead.

West Florida's lead grew to as many as 11 midway through the first half before the Saints went on an 11-4 run capped by a layup by Travis Core to pull them within four point with just under five minutes remaining in the opening half. 

The Argos then countered with a seven-point spurt to take a six point lead heading into intermission.

The two teams started the second half by trading baskets, before a 5-0 run by the Argos gave them a lead they would never relinquish. 

For the first time this season the Saints went an entire game without holding a lead, despite pulling within a point several times in the first half.

The Saints pulled to within seven points with a little over three minutes remaining in the game on a jumper by transfer Scott Windom, but once again the Argos responded. 

Offensively, the Saints were led by Clarence Tillman and Elijah Smith who both had 14 points. Tillman pulled down six boards and Smith had two blocks.

Tillman also converted on eight of his 10 free throw attempts. Besides Chaun Tinney, the Saints struggled from the charity stripe, shooting a season low 64 percent (18-28). 

Scott Windom was the only other Saint to score in double figures as he added 11 points and five rebounds, despite battling foul trouble for the second straight game.

After shooting a season-high 54.5 percent from beyond-the-arc last night, the Saints struggled from three-point range, shooting a season-low 22.7 percent (5-22). 

The Argos only attempted two shots from deep converting one, which was their first of the season.

West Florida's Marquis Mathis scored a game-high 32 points, while making 12 of his 21 shots from the floor and was the only player for the Argos to score in double figures. 

The Saints return to the hardwood on Tuesday, November 29, when they travel to Young Harris for a non-conference game against the Mountain Lions with tip-off scheduled for 7:00 pm.