– The North Georgia men’s basketball team saw their
seven-game winning streak come to a halt on Saturday afternoon as
Armstrong Atlantic snapped their nine-game skid and picked up their
first Peach Belt Conference victory with an 88-78 over the Saints
in Alumni Arena.
North Georgia drops their first game in 26 days, falling to 12-7 overall and 7-2 in the Peach Belt Conference, while the Pirates improve to 6-13 on the season and 1-9 in the league.
With North Georgia holding a slim 14-13 lead with 13:39 left in the first half, senior Keron McKenzie nailed back-to-back three-pointers to put the Pirates up by five. AASU would stretch that lead to nine, 42-33, at halftime as the Pirates hit 53.3 percent of their shots from the floor and also nailed six-of-10 three-pointers.
In the second half, another McKenzie three-pointer capped a 15-8 run coming out of halftime and put the Pirates up by 16, 57-41, with 14:32 left. The Pirates led by as many as 19 in the second half before North Georgia finally cut the lead to single digits with one minute left. AASU hit 7-of-8 free throws down the stretch, halting their longest losing streak since 1988.
Bernard Rimmer led the Saints with a game-high 24 points, while Michael Moynihan added 10 points and four assists. Kindall Butler and Carl Taylor both came up a point shy of double figures with nine apiece.
Patrick Shokpeka led the Pirates in double figures, scoring 22 points on the night. Freshman David Pruett added 17 points, making 5-of-6 three-pointers, while Chris Vanlandingham added 12 points and McKenzie chipped in 11.
The Saints shot 49.1 percent from the field, 47.1 percent from long range, and 70.6 percent from the free throw line, while Armstrong Atlantic was 55.4 percent from the floor, 55.6 percent from behind the arc, and 72.7 percent from the charity stripe.
North Georgia returns to action on Wednesday evening, hitting the road once again for another road contest, this time on the campus of Georgia College & State University at the Centennial Center. Tip-off is slated for 7:30 p.m. against the Bobcats.