AUGUSTA, Ga. -- Taylor Shugart scored 14 points and blocked the potential game-tying shot with two seconds left in overtime to give seventh-seeded Anderson a dramatic 75-73 win over top-seeded Augusta State in the championship game of the 2011 NCAA Tournament Southeast Regional at Christenberry Fieldhouse.
Denzail Jones also scored 14 points, Oskars Ernsteins added 12 points and Brandon Young dished out seven assists for the Trojans (21-11), who advance to the NCAA Elite Eight for the first time in school history. Anderson avenged a 100-70 loss to Augusta State in last year's Southeast Regional semifinals and a 78-72 defeat to the Jaguars in this year's season opener.
Augusta State's Franck Ndongo posted a double-double for the 10th time this season, including all three Southeast Regional games, with 10 rebounds and a career-high 28 points on 10-15 shooting from the field and 8-10 from the free throw line. George Johnson had 18 points and six assists for the Jaguars (30-4), who were denied a fourth straight trip to the Elite Eight and saw their home winning streak snapped at 48 straight games.
Shugart scored four of Anderson's six points in overtime, including a jumper in the paint with 1:13 on the clock that broke a 73-all tie and proved to be the winning points. Augusta State had a chance to tie after Jones missed the front end of a one-and-one with 17 seconds left, but Ben Purser's shot in the lane was blocked cleanly by Shugart and the Anderson players and coaches erupted in celebration as time expired. Augusta State missed eight of its nine shots from the field in overtime.
O'Neal Armstrong's two free throws with one minute remaining in regulation put Augusta State up 69-66, matching the Jaguars' biggest lead of the second half. Shugart made one of two free throws to pull Anderson within two points with 43 seconds left, and Ndongo was fouled one second later. Ndongo, who had been a perfect 8-8 from the free throw line to that point, missed both attempts. Anderson's Kevis Cornwell rebounded the second miss and hit a jumper with 27 seconds remaining to tie the score at 69. After an Augusta State timeout, the Trojans broke up Purser's pass to Ndongo for a potential game-winning shot at the buzzer.
A layup by Nick Trull followed by a driving dunk by Trey Britton gave Anderson a 52-43 lead with just under 12 minutes left in the second half, but Augusta State outscored the Trojans 24-12 over the next six-and-a-half minutes to take a three-point lead. Ndongo's two free throws tied the score at 64 with 3:44 on the clock and Johnson's three-pointer at 3:09 put Augusta State on top 67-64, the Jaguars' first lead since 23-22 at the seven-minute mark of the first half.
After hitting a career-best eight three-pointers and matching his career high with 31 points in the Jaguars' 71-60 semifinal win over Queens, Johnson continued his hot hand with two treys in the first four minutes of the championship game. Jones matched him with two three-pointers of his own as the teams played to a 10-all tie.
Ernsteins, who hit five three-pointers in the Trojans' 82-76 semifinal victory over Montevallo, nailed his first three-ball of the night at the 6:42 mark and another a minute later to put Anderson up by five. Jones followed with a steal and fastbreak layup to stretch the margin to 30-23, and Ernsteins hit his third three-pointer to give the Trojans their biggest lead of the first half, 37-28.
Three-point shooting was the difference in the first half, as the Trojans hit seven of 13 shots (53.8 percent) from beyond the arc to take a 39-32 lead to the break. Jones led a balanced Anderson attack with 10 first-half points while Ernsteins scored nine. However, the Trojans shot just 1-7 (14.3 percent) from three-point land in the second half. The lone second-half trey, by Ernsteins from the right wing, put Anderson up 62-56 with 6:20 to play.
After Johnson's two early three-pointers, the Trojans held him to just two more points the rest of the first half. Ndongo had a team-high 10 points and five rebounds as the Jaguars shot 40 percent (4-10) from three-point range and 52.2 percent (12-23) overall in the opening half.
Augusta State shot 57.9 percent (11-19) in the second half to rally from the seven-point halftime deficit, but just 11.1 percent (1-9) in overtime to finish the game at 47.1 percent (24-51) from the field, while Anderson finished at 50 percent (29-58). Augusta State converted 15 of its first 18 free throws and finished 17-22 (77.3 percent) from the charity stripe, while Anderson connected on nine of 14 (64.3 percent) from the free throw line.
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March 21, 2011 Jags’ Johnson Named All-American
March 21, 2011 ASU’s Ndongo Tabbed With Academic Honor
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March 12, 2011 Top-Seeded Augusta State Tops UNC Pembroke, 80-66
March 9, 2011 ASU’s Johnson Earns Region Honor
March 8, 2011 Somewhere In Augusta Hosts Jaguars Regional Rally
March 8, 2011 Jaguars No. 3 In Final Poll
March 6, 2011 ASU Tabbed To Host Fifth Straight Regional
March 6, 2011 Jaguars Claim PBC Tournament Title
March 5, 2011 Jags Surge Late For Semifinal Win
March 5, 2011 ASU To Host Selection Show Party
March 4, 2011 ASU's Johnson, Ndongo Honored
March 2, 2011 Jags Tighten Grip On Top Spot In Region Poll
March 1, 2011 Jaguars Hold Steady At No. 5
March 1, 2011 Second-Half Surge Propels No. 5 Jags, 71-61
February 28, 2011 Men’s Basketball Tournament Bracket Released by Peach Belt
February 26, 2011 No. 5 Jaguars Top Lander, 65-60
February 23, 2011 Jaguars Jump Back Into Top Five
February 23, 2011 Jaguars Move To Top Of Southeast Region Poll
February 19, 2011 No. 11 Jags Victorious On Senior Day, 66-64
February 16, 2011 No. 11 Jags Turn Back Flagler, 68-54
February 15, 2011 Jags Land At No. 11 In National Poll
February 12, 2011 ASU's Metress Wins No. 300
February 10, 2011 Bobcats Pull 73-69 Upset Of No. 7 Jags
February 9, 2011 Jags Remain Second In Region Poll
February 7, 2011 Johnson Sparks Jags Past UNCP, 73-54
February 5, 2011 No. 3 Jags Hammer Lander, 85-46
February 2, 2011 Pacers Upend No. 3 ASU, 74-62
February 2, 2011 ASU Remains Second In Region Poll
February 1, 2011 Jags Hold Steady At No. 3
January 29, 2011 Ndongo Sparks No. 3 Jaguars, 67-48
January 28, 2011 Jaguars To Be Honored
January 27, 2011 No. 3 ASU Bests No. 18 Hurricanes, 68-59
January 26, 2011 ASU No. 2 In Initial Region Poll
January 26, 2011 Limited Number of Tickets Available For Jaguars-Pacers, Part II
January 25, 2011 ASU Maintains No. 3 Spot In National Poll
January 24, 2011 ASU Outlasts Pacers In OT, 57-53
January 20, 2011 Purser Paces Jags Past Pembroke, 72-54
January 18, 2011 Jaguars Rise Up To No. 3
January 17, 2011 No. 5 ASU Takes Down No. 24 Blazers
January 15, 2011 No. 5 Jags Do It With Defense
January 13, 2011 ASU Offers Pre-Sale For USCA Tickets
January 12, 2011 Jaguars Take Nailbiter, 63-61
January 11, 2011 Jaguars Ranked No. 5, Extend Nation's Longest Streak
January 8, 2011 Late Rally Lifts Jaguars Over FMU
January 5, 2011 Flagler Upsets No. 3 Jags In OT, 76-70
January 4, 2011 Jags Continue Climb, Up To No. 3
January 3, 2011 Strong Second Half Keys No. 5 ASU, 89-75
December 30, 2010 No. 5 Jags Rally Past Mount Olive
December 21, 2010 ASU Moves Up To No. 5
December 18, 2010 No. 8 Jags Take Thriller On The Road
December 15, 2010 ASU Heats Up On The Road
December 14, 2010 Jaguars Climb To No. 8
December 11, 2010 No. 10 Jags Run Past Emmanuel, 81-54
December 7, 2010 Jaguars Jump To No. 10
December 4, 2010 ASU Opens PBC Slate With 75-57 Win
December 2, 2010 Jaguars Win Seventh Straight
November 30, 2010 Jaguars 18th In NABC Poll
November 24, 2010 No. 20 ASU Rolls Past Life
November 23, 2010 Jaguars Land At No. 20
November 23, 2010 ASU Hosts Communities In Schools Night
November 20, 2010 Jaguars Top Benedict, 65-59
November 17, 2010 Jaguars Team Up With Chick-fil-A
November 13, 2010 Jaguars Win At Tusculum
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November 4, 2010 Jaguars Fall At Georgia, 85-48
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