AUGUSTA, Ga. – The Augusta University men's basketball team hosted the No. 6 nationally-ranked USC Aiken Pacers for a Peach Belt Conference rivalry showdown in Christenberry Fieldhouse on Wednesday night and fell 79-76 in a classic showdown.
Augusta (13-5, 9-3 PBC)
USC Aiken (18-1, 12-1 PBC)
Augusta freshman Miguel Arnold poured in 14 first-half points – making four early three pointers and he finished the night with a career-high 25 points. He also set a new personal record with seven made treys. Augusta senior Deane Williams delivered 13 points and seven rebounds, junior Rafael Monteiro had 11 points and five rebounds, and freshman Tyree Myers tallied 10 points, seven assists, and three boards in the loss.
The first half was tied at 21-all with 8:30 on the clock. USCA took their largest lead of the half up by eight with 4:09 on the first-half clock, but AU closed the gap. Freshman Robert Barlund had a tip-in basket at the buzzer to give the Jaguars a 42-40 lead at halftime. There were 11 lead changes and eight tie scores in the first half.
Arnold stayed hot from the arc and buried another three pointer to open the second half for Augusta. With under 9:00 minutes left, the game was still tied at 59-59 and it was still dead even at 67-67 with five to go. AU rolled to a 71-67 lead off a Myers layup and a put-back basket from Monteiro. USCA answered with a three pointer and trailed 74-72. The Pacers stole the lead when Ty'lik Evans sunk a three pointer that he was fouled on. He made the layup for USCA to go up 76-74 with 1:02 to play in regulation.
The Jags were called for goaltending to give the Pacers a 78-76 lead with seconds left. After USCA hit one of two free throws on the next possession, Augusta grabbed the rebound and had the ball down 79-76 with 03.2 to play. USCA got a turnover to survive AU for the win.
The Jags allowed 23 points off turnovers, but did outrebound the Pacers 38-31.
The Jaguars welcome Lander University on Saturday, Feb. 2 for a Peach Belt Conference contest in Christenberry Fieldhouse. The Jags host 2019 Military Appreciation Day during the event, with soldiers from Fort Gordon joining the teams for the armed forces celebration. Various military groups will be in attendance and new recruits will be inducted during the men's halftime. The women tipoff at 12:00 p.m. and the men follow at 2:00 p.m.
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