January 4, 2014

UNG Men's Basketball Team Cages Bobcats 85-77

MILLEDGEVILLE, Georgia – (UNGAthletics.com) – The University of North Georgia men's basketball team earned an 85-77 Peach Belt Conference win over Georgia College in GC's Centennial Center on Saturday evening to secure the team's first back-to-back victories of the young season.  The game was the first for the Nighthawks following a 19-day break for the holidays. 

The first half was a tight affair with North Georgia's largest lead being a nine-point advantage (43-34) following a pair of free throws from Michael Varrichione just 70 seconds before halftime.   UNG would eventually settle for a seven-point lead at intermission courtesy of a buzzer-beating layup from Chris Tanzy.

Georgia College (5-6, 1-3 PBC) trimmed the Nighthawk lead down to a single possession at 45-42 just a minute into the second period but North Georgia responded with a 14-4 run over the next five minutes to extend its lead to double figures until a layup by GC's Terrell Harris at the 5:52 mark made it a nine point (74-65) UNG advantage.

Matt Polyne's three-pointer with just 1:13 left in the game brought the Bobcats to within five at 82-77 but North Georgia would make just enough of its final shots from the charity stripe to earn its third PBC victory of the season.

Ishmael Hollis led five Nighthawks in double figures with a team-best 19 points and completed his fifth double-double of the season with a game-high 10 rebounds.  Lamar Richardson added 15 courtesy of five three-point baskets.  Varrichione would finish with 14 including 8-12 from the free throw line while the point guard tandem of Tanzy and Travis Core added 15 and 11 respectively.

Georgia College held a 41-34 advantage on the glass highlighted by 18 offensive rebounds but was plagued by 4-23 (17%) evening from behind the arch.  UNG connected on 27-52 shots from the field for a brisk 52% clip.

Royal Thomas led the Bobcats with a game-high 26 points on 9-13 from the floor.  Harris would be the only other GC player to reach double figures with 10.

North Georgia (5-4, 2-1 PBC) next travels to Montevallo on Wednesday, January 8 for an 8:30 PM EST Peach Belt Conference challenge.