Augusta State outlasts Montevallo

FROM STAFF REPORTS

The University of Montevallo men’s basketball team fell behind quickly in the first half against Augusta State University before a strong start to the second half gave the Jaguars all they could handle.

However, the second-half push wasn’t enough as the Falcons fell to Augusta State 56-50 in a Peach Belt Conference contest. Augusta State entered the game ranked No. 7 in the latest National Association of Basketball Coaches’ NCAA Division II poll.

The Falcons (14-8 overall, 7-6 in Peach Belt Conference) were led by junior DeMarcus Catchings, who scored 12 points and grabbed seven rebounds.

Junior Ryan Westbrooks scored nine points. Junior Jervan Jackson chipped in eight points, all of which came from the free-throw line. Jackson also had a game-high three blocks.

Junior Tyrone Gordon also had eight points as he was 3-of-4 from the floor.

Montevallo shot 42.1 percent from the field, while Augusta State hit 40.5 percent of its shots. Montevallo struggled from the free-throw line as the Falcons hit just 57.7 percent (15-of-26) from the charity stripe.

With the game tied at 7-7, the Jaguars began a 22-5 run, which gave them a 17-point lead with just under five minutes to play in the first half.

Layups by Westbrooks and Gordon cut the Jaguars’ lead to 13 points before a pair of free throws by Jackson cut it to just 11 points. Augusta State was able to hit a pair of free throws with 1:26 left in the opening half to go back up by 13 points, but a free throw with one second left in the half cut the lead to 31-19 heading into the locker room at halftime.

Montevallo began the second half with an 18-6 run, which tied the game at 37-37 with 7:44 left in the game. Just more than two minutes later, Westbrooks hit a 3-pointer to give the Falcons their first lead since early in the first half.

Augusta State responded with a 9-0 run to take a 50-42 lead with 2:39 left in the game. The Falcons couldn’t turn the contest into a one-possession game in the final minutes.