AUGUSTA, Ga. – The Augusta University men's basketball team lost their first game of the 2016-17 season on Saturday afternoon to the University of West Georgia 104-86. The first half was a tightly contested 20 minutes of play and had a four point difference at halftime, but the Wolves shot 72 percent from the floor in the second to run away with the victory.
Averaging 23 points per contest through the first three games, Augusta (3-1) senior Keshun Sherrill led the team with 20 points and sophomore Deane Williams contributed 17 points. Each had four rebounds. Sophomore Tyvez Monroe tallied nine points and seven rebounds and junior Tamyrik Fields posted eight points and four rebounds.
The Jags were 24-of-36 (66.7 percent) from the free-throw line and WUG was 25-for-30 (83.3 percent).
West Georgia shot 72 percent from field-goal range in the second half and 55.9 for the game. Augusta struggled with a 35.1 percent first half field goal percentage and ended the game with a 41.5 mark.
It was the first time the Jags have given up 100 points since Jan. 18, 2016 when Young Harris won 105-99 in Christenberry. UWG grabbed 38 rebound to Augusta's 35 and had 32 points in the paint.
The Wolves were led by Willie Evans and Keron Briggs who each had 15 points. Six players from UWG scored in double figures.
The Wolves kissed one off the glass for the first score of the day and they went on an 8-1 run after the Jags missed their first nine attempts. Monroe buried a three pointer to reverse Augusta's struggles and sophomore Ben Urisch tied the game when he sprinted the open floor for a wide open layup.
The Jags trailed the first half until they made it 17-15 on sophomore Vlad Cobzaru's one-handed jumper in the lane with just above 11 minutes to go until half. UWG's Aaron Cameron hit a trey and Evans answered it with another three pointer to build back the lead.
At the 8:58 mark, Monroe found Sherrill on the perimeter for another three pointer that tied the game 24-24. UWG took back the lead, but two possessions later Sherrill showed more range and tie the score again with his second three pointer at the point in the game.
The slow start forced the Jags to fight from behind all first half and the Wolves went into the break on top 45-41. Sherrill and Brooks each scored eight in the first half, but the Jags only shot 31.5 percent from the floor.
Williams swatted a UWG shot back to the top of the key to start the second half and found Sherrill for a fast break bucket. Ursich ushered in the next Jaguar basket to tie the game 45-45.
The Wolves slowed down Augusta and took their biggest lead in the second half up 10 with 14 minutes to play. Sherrill only had six shot attempts through the first 27 minutes of the game and the Jags found themselves in their largest deficit of the season down by 20.
The Jaguars host their first basketball doubleheader with the women's hoops teams on Tuesday, Nov. 22 in Christenberry Fieldhouse. The women host Fort Valley State University at 5:30 p.m. and the men meet Benedict College at 7:30 p.m.
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