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March 20, 2008

Jaguars out of national tournament

All season long, the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team has been able to spot its opponents an early lead, then overtake them.

Not so Thursday in an elimination game at the National Junior College Athletic Association tournament in Hutchinson, Kan. The Jaguars quickly fell behind by double figures, trailed by 15 points at the half and lost 83-61 to Itawamba (Miss.) Community College.

The Jaguars head home with a final record of 23-12, which includes the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association regular season and tournament championships and the District 10 title. Georgia Perimeter returned to the national tournament for the third-straight year.

Itawamba beat GPC on the boards 45-34, and the Jaguars could not contain Sergio Kerusch, who poured in 24 points for the Indians (30-3).

Three Jaguars attained double digits in scoring: Jamail Turner, 16 points; Anthony Miller, 14; and Jacquiese Holcombe, 11. Itawamba held the Jaguars’ season scoring leader, Vincent Banks, to five points.

This year’s tournament marked the first of the decade—in six appearances—whereby coach Alfred Barney’s squad returned from the national tournament without a win. But it was a remarkable achievement to even reach the 16-team field, given that the Jaguars were 7-9 in December.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

March 19, 2008

Jaguars’ slow start brings first-round loss

The storybook run by the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team was interrupted in a run-and-gun game Wednesday that ended with the Jaguars on the losing end.

In its opener at the NJCAA tournament in Hutchinson, Kan., GPC was outsprinted by South Plains College ( Tex. ) 88-83.

Kaihrique Irick and Jacquiese Holcombe scored 26 and 24 points, respectively, to keep GPC in contention to the end. But their efforts couldn’t overcome the Jaguars’ sluggish first half, which found them behind at one juncture by 21 points.

“We didn’t block out [on rebounds], which we talked about all week,” coach Alfred Barney said. “We played good defense and got stops. But we didn’t finish the play, and they got second shots.”

GPC closed the gap to 44-33 at the half and came out strong after intermission, dominating the boards and forcing turnovers with a fired-up defense. Twice the Jaguars tied it, once on a Holcombe three-point basket to make it 59-59 with 8:46 left.

However, South Plains recovered to take a seven-point lead that it maintained until GPC drew within four, 84-80, in the closing minute. But the Texans (27-5) held on for the victory.

“At the half, we were right there,” Barney said. He noted that South Plains’ press was not troublesome and that the difference was five more free throws made by the Texans. “We had opportunities.”

Anthony Miller scored 14 in the Jaguars’ effort and Jamail Turner added 11. Vincent Banks, the team’s leading scorer this season, had an off night and was used sparingly by Barney.

The Jaguars rolled into the nationals on a wave of 16 wins over previous 17 games, but they could not extend the streak against South Plains.

The verdict sends the Jaguars (23-11) into the losers’ bracket, where they will play Itawamba ( Miss. ) Community College (29-3) Thursday at 3 p.m. (EDT).

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

March 11, 2008

GPC draws South Plains in national tourney

The GPC men’s basketball team will open its third straight NJCAA tournament on Wednesday, March 19, against South Plains (Tex.) College.

The noon (EDT) tip-off matches two teams whose season patterns ran opposite each other.

The Jaguars (23-10) rallied from a 7-9 start to capture 16 of their past 17 games. The Texans (26-5) dropped five of their last eight regular season dates before reversing fortunes in the playoffs.

Each team is guaranteed at least two games in the nationals at Hutchinson, Kan., and four games in as many days is possible.

As a result, depth could be GPC’s not-so-secret weapon, coach Alfred Barney maintains. “When one guy is not playing well, we have other people ready to step up.”

Barney has been busy hunting information on the Texans to prepare for them. He said Texas junior colleges adhere to a pact not to share scouting data with out-of-state schools and that South Plains played an entirely in-state schedule.

Still, he said the Jaguars will depart Sunday for Hutchinson on a wave of optimism.

“I think we’re playing pretty well as a unit, with a lot of confidence,” Barney said.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

March 8, 2008

Jaguars return to third straight nationals

Unbeaten at home all season and 2-0 against the GPC men’s basketball team, Aiken (S.C.) Technical College seemed to have the Jaguars right where they wanted them -- at home in the District 10 title game.

But GPC extended the Knights into overtime Saturday, then relied on its superior depth to win 94-87 and move on to the NJCAA tournament March 18-22 in Hutchinson, Kan.

The victory, which came a few hours after the Lady Jaguars’ District 10 championship in the Palmetto State, was GPC’s 15th in the last 16 games

In the high-scoring extra period, won by GPC 22-15, Anthony Miller’s 3-point basket with 3:52 remaining widened the visitors’ lead to four points. Aiken never crept closer than three from then on.

The Jaguars (23-10) failed to capitalize on a break in the final minute of regulation when Aiken was assessed a technical foul for having an extra player on the court. But Miller missed both free throws.

However, he did tie the game on a layup with six seconds left, then the Patriots missed a jumpshot at the horn to force overtime.

Aiken had knocked off the Jaguars at home 62-57 in late November and 65-56 on the Decatur campus in mid-December.

The second defeat dropped the Jaguars to 7-7. They would lose two more games before reversing the season’s fortunes to reach the nationals for the third consecutive season.

Miller, a sharpshooter of late, outgunned his usually more prolific teammates to score 27 points. Vincent Banks had 24 and Jacquiese Holcombe 16. Greg Thomas paced the losers with 26.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

March 1, 2008

Jaguars win third straight region crown

Another shaky first half, another shake-free second half.

And another Region 17 championship, the third straight for the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team.

The Jaguars, behind for part of a first half that ended in a 34-34 tie, broke loose after the break and shook off South Georgia Tech 80-68 on Saturday in the regional finale on GPC’s Decatur campus.

The top seed cranked up its potent offense with a 46-point second period, mirroring its semifinal win on Friday. The Jaguars trailed Truett-McConnell College 34-32, only to ignite for 53 points following intermission in advancing to the title game.

“We made a few adjustments, but it’s all about who wants it more,” GPC head coach Alfred Barney said of the difference in halves. “We played better this time down the stretch.”

On Feb. 9 the Jets had handed Georgia Perimeter its only conference defeat on the same court and by the same score, 80-68.

Jamail Turner paved the way for the Jaguars with 21 points and nine rebounds. However, he fouled out with the outcome still in doubt. Kaihrique Irick was effective in relief as GPC did not take a double-digit lead until the final minute.

In fact, the Jaguars were unable to gain more than a four-point lead until Turner hit a 3-point shot from the key for a 67-61 edge with 6:23 left to play.

Vincent Banks coolly hit two free throws and followed with two more to make it 71-64 at 3:19. He then led a fastbreak, feeding off to Anthony Miller, who sank two foul shots with a minute left to put GPC up 73-66.

If that didn’t ice the game, Nathaniel Mitchell did it 15 seconds later when he grabbed a rebound and lobbed a long pass downcourt to Miller for an open lay-up and the first nine-point lead. Then Jacquiese Holcombe sank two free throws to end all doubt.

Holcombe amassed 16 points and 11 rebounds. Banks, the standout on Friday, scored 12 points and Miller had 11.

Banks, who scored 26 points in Friday’s semifinal victory, was named tournament Most Valuable Player. He and Turner were named to the All-Tournament team, along with Mikaiel Carter of Truett-McConnell College, Matthew Butler of Middle Georgia College and Steve Robinson of South Georgia Tech.

Saturday the Jaguars travel to Aiken, S.C., to play Aiken Technical College in the National Junior College Athletic Association District 10 championship game. The winner will advance to the national tournament in Hutchinson, Kan., beginning on March 18.

“We are putting it together at the right time,” said Barney, whose team is on a 15-1 run, improving to 22-10 after going 7-9 before January. “We played well together as a team today. As long as we do that . . . ”

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

Feb. 29, 2008

GPC rallies to advance to region final

According to a long-held belief in college basketball, it is difficult to beat a team three times in one season.

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s squad discovered how valid that sentiment is, having trailed Truett-McConnell College at halftime Friday in the Region 17 semifinals on the Jaguars’ Decatur Campus.

But GPC gathered itself and exploded with a 53-point second half to win 85-78 in progressing to the region title game Saturday at 4 p.m. on its home court. The Jaguars face South Georgia Tech, which took the other semifinal 91-85 over Middle Georgia College.

The Jaguars, who had defeated the Bears by two points on the road a month ago and by 20 only a week ago at home, found themselves behind 34-32 at the break. They came out on fire in the second half, surging ahead 61-47 before the visitors closed the gap at the end.

Vincent Banks poured in 26 points in just 22 minutes of action to lead GPC. He also hauled in seven rebounds.

Jamail Turner tallied 11 and Derek Douglas 10 for the Jaguars, who departed from their usual balanced scoring pattern. GPC got 30 points from its subs and converted turnovers into 33 points.

The Region 17 championship game will be played at the GPC Decatur Campus gymnasium at 4 p.m., Saturday, March 1, located at 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur, GA 30033.

Feb. 23, 2008

Top seed GPC scorches nets in finale

Five teammates scoring in double figures during the same game is a coach’s dream. Six players? Nirvana.

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball squad placed a half-dozen in the double-digit points club for a 94-90 win Saturday over Coastal Georgia Community College in Brunswick. It was the highest offensive outburst of the year for the Jaguars, coming in their regular-season finale.

The victory ended a phenomenal run for the Jaguars, who closed the regular season 20-10 after once sinking to 7-9. They also wound up 11-1 in the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association, giving them top seed in the league’s Region 17 playoffs next weekend and home-court advantage. They are off until the semifinals Friday on GPC’s Decatur Campus.

Jamail Turner led the Georgia Perimeter scoring parade with 20 points, while Anthony Miller had 19. The rest of the six-pack: Vincent Banks 13, Kenny Willis 12, Jacquiese Holcombe and Kaihrique Irick 10 each.

The Jaguars’ largest advantage was 10 points just before halftime. They remained ahead throughout, allowing Coastal Georgia no closer than three at the end.

The Region 17 tournament begins Tuesday with two play-in games, and then resumes Friday at Georgia Perimeter College with the semifinals. The championship game will be played on Saturday evening at the Decatur Campus.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Feb. 21, 2008

Jaguars clinch regular season title

Before Thursday night’s tip-off, the GPC men’s basketball program handed out gifts to the sophomores playing their final regularly scheduled home game.

Afterwards, the entire team took home a collective gift—the symbolic Georgia Junior College Athletics Association regular season title.

The Jaguars rolled by Truett-McConnell College 78-58 for their 10th win in 11 league games. GPC improved to 19-10 all told, with a shot at victory No. 20 Saturday afternoon against Coastal Georgia Community College in Brunswick.

Coach Alfred Barney started five sophomores in their farewell, some of whom customarily come off the bench. “I was worried about being so small, but size didn’t hurt us,” he said.

The Jaguars jumped ahead 12-2 and never looked back in the scrappy foul-fest, which consisted of 56 fouls and 78 free throws, 48 by the winning team. The Jags’ lead stayed in double figures the whole way.

Freshman Jamail Turner outshone the sophs with 23 points and nine rebounds, both team highs. Derek Douglas was the highest-scoring sophomore with 13.

The sophomores—and the freshmen—aren’t finished at home. They’ll be back next weekend as host of the NJCAA Region 17 final four tournament. The semifinals will be played on Friday, February 29, and the championship game on Saturday, March 1 at the Decatur Campus gym. The teams and game times will be announced early next week.

The Georgia Junior College Athletics Association tournament will be played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Feb. 16, 2008

Douglas sparks Jaguars off bench

On balance, it was another fine, share-the-ball outing for the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team Saturday afternoon.

Balanced scoring was the key as the Jaguars preserved their conference lead in the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association by axing Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College 89-73 on the Decatur campus.

Five players scored in the teens, including substitute Derek Douglas with an offensive explosion. Scoring at a point-a-minute pace, he rang up 18, just one fewer than usual leader Vincent Banks. Douglas nailed all seven of his field-goal attempts.

Jamail Turner was close behind with 16 points, while Jacquiese Holcombe had 14 and Kaihrique Irick 11. Point guard Chaun Tinney, always the main source of GPC baskets, amassed eight assists.

Midway through the second half, Douglas sank two 3-point goals and added a steal and layup to give the Jaguars an insurmountable momentum.

The Jaguars (18-10, 9-1) round out their home schedule on Thursday night at 7:30p.m. against Truett-McConnell College.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Feb. 9, 2008

Jets end GPC string of victories

The streak is over. The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team, winner of nine straight games, tasted defeat on Saturday for the first time in the calendar year, succumbing to South Georgia Tech 80-68 on GPC’s Decatur Campus.

Sophomore forward Jacquiese Holcombe led the Jaguars with 21 points, followed by Jamail Turner with 16 points and 10 rebounds. But it wasn’t enough to overcome the Jets’ offense and especially DeAntre Jefferson’s 24 points on 11 of 14 field goal attempts.

The Jaguars toughened up on a brutal nonconference schedule, which enabled them to open the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association portion with seven consecutive victories. South Georgia Tech halted their quest for a perfect league record, setting up a crucial game Wednesday night against Middle Georgia College in Cochran.

GPC, 16-10 overall and 7-1 in conference play, invades Middle Georgia (16-7, 6-2) with first place on the line. A victory for the home team would leave the teams deadlocked atop the league.

The Jaguars will return home on Saturday to host Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College at 4 p. m.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Feb. 2, 2008

Jaguars continue winning streak

After three straight breath-sapping wins, the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team finally had a game in which it could breathe easily during the final minutes.

But demanding coach Alfred Barney was breathing fire following the Jaguars’ 65-53 triumph over Albany Tech on the Decatur campus Saturday afternoon.

“We set the sport of basketball back 10 years,” said Barney, who was counting on a better performance on the heels of three consecutive road games.

“I was disappointed with the effort. The only good thing about it was that we were fortunate enough to win.”

It was no cakewalk. Albany Tech led by seven in the second half. The Jaguars awakened to nose ahead by four, and then ran off 10 consecutive points to salt away their ninth victory in a row.

Jamail Turner stood out among the languid Jaguars with 20 points. The only other double-figure scorer was Jacquiese Holcombe with 10.

Still unbeaten in the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association, the Jaguars (16-9, 7-0) can exhale now that a busy stretch of games has ended. They are off until next Saturday afternoon, when South Georgia Tech visits.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Jan. 31, 2008

Jaguars edge Truett McConnell

Compared to its previous two games, the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball win over Truett McConnell College on Thursday in Cleveland, Ga., was a relative romp.

That’s because the margin of victory in the earlier games was one point, both achieved on last-second baskets. This time, it was 79-77, with the Jaguars holding on for dear life after letting a double-digit lead dissipate.

Too many missed free throws by GPC, which controlled the first 32 minutes, enabled the home team to chip away. Anthony Miller’s three-pointer put the Jaguars up by five points inside the last minute. But his teammates twice misfired on the front end of subsequent bonus situations while allowing baskets at the other end.

With 1.2 seconds left, a Truett McConnell free throw cut the margin to two. The second attempt was intentionally missed but GPC corraled the rebound and ran out the clock.

The victory was GPC’s eighth in a row and elevated the Jaguars to 15-9, 7-0 in the GJCAA, which the Jaguars now lead comfortably. Jacquiese Holcombe and Miller each scored 20.

Next up is Albany Tech at 4 p.m. Saturday on the Decatur Campus.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Jan. 29, 2008

Mitchell’s final-seconds burst saves GPC

Start bringing a defibrillator to Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball games. And, if you’re a Jaguars fan, come ready to celebrate afterwards.

For the second straight outing, GPC clawed from behind in the last second for an improbable victory. Monday night, the stunned victim was Atlanta Metro College, which lost 90-89 in its gym.

Two days earlier, it was Vincent Banks’ three-pointer with a half-second left that lifted the Jaguars over Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College 63-62.

Somehow, the Jaguars topped that Houdini-esque escape on Monday. They trailed 89-85 with 4.8 seconds left when Nathaniel Mitchell was fouled on a three-point attempt. He sank every shot, trimming the deficit to one.

Coach Alfred Barney inserted little-used guard Derek Douglas for defensive purposes. Douglas, who played only four minutes, stole the inbounds pass off the full-court press and passed to Mitchell, who dropped in a layup at the buzzer.

“Our kids didn’t quit,” Barney said. “They played till the end.”

The Jaguars (14-9, 6-0), winning their seventh in a row, controlled most of the first half, but fell behind by seven after intermission.

They placed five players in double-figures for scoring. Substitute Kaihirique Irick had 18, Jamail Turner 16, Jacquiese Holcombe 14, Vincent Banks 13 (along with 11 rebounds and 10 assists) and Anthony Miller 10.

GPC can expand its two-game lead in the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association with a triumph Thursday night in Cleveland, Ga., against Truett-McConnell College.

Saturday the Jaguars will host Albany Tech at 2 p.m. Georgia Perimeter defeated the Titans 76-61 early in January.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Jan. 27, 2008

Banks’ bomb wins at buzzer

The game came down to the end with the ball in the hands of Vincent Banks, who enrolled at GPC and joined the men’s basketball team for moments like this.

Banks, honored in high school as Georgia’s Mr. Basketball in 2003, sat out three years before becoming a Jaguar. He sank a three-pointer with a half-second left in Tifton as GPC nipped Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College 63-62 on Saturday.

The narrow escape kept the Jaguars ahead of the pack in the GJCAA, unbeaten at 5-0. A sixth straight victory polished their overall record at 13-9.

Banks was GPC’s second-leading scorer behind Jamail Turner, who had 20 points to go along with 10 rebounds.

Mario Bennett paced ABAC, winless in the league, with 19 points. He and Banks are among the GJCAA’s most prolific scorers.

The Jaguars dive into a busy-three game week Monday night at Atlanta Metro College, followed by a Thursday date in Cleveland, Ga, against Truett-McConnell and a Saturday home matinee against Albany Tech at 4 p.m.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Jan. 25, 2008

Jaguars move into first place in GJCAA

The challenging pre-conference schedule endured by the GPC men’s basketball team is paying off.

The Jaguars, who entered their Georgia Junior College Athletic Association schedule with a losing record, improved to 4-0 in the league Wednesday night by whipping Middle Georgia College 91-61 on the Decatur campus.

Middle Georgia also entered the game unbeaten in the conference and sporting an impressive 12-5 overall record, but GPC maintained a comfortable edge most of the way. The win, on Georgia Perimeter’s Homecoming Night, put the Jaguars (12-9, 4-0) alone atop the GJCAA standings.

The score was tied 16-16 with 8:30 left in the first half when Jacquiese Holcombe took a pass down low and put it in. That began an 18-2 run that gave GPC a 34-18 lead, and the Warriors never caught the Jaguars.

Five players reached double figures for GPC, an indication that head coach Alfred Barney’s emphasis on the stars accepting less minutes on the floor is sinking in.

“We tell them that any time you get in the game, make the most of it,” Barney said.

Holcombe led the parade with 21 points and 12 rebounds. Vincent Banks scored 19, Chris Lightner 13, Jamail Turner 12 and Kaihrique Irick 11.

“The talent has always been there,” Barney said, ‘but the commitment has not always been. Our strong pre-league schedule has helped. Even though we lost nine times, it got us mentally tough.”

That toughness will be tested with a three-game stretch on the road, beginning Saturday afternoon against Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College in Tifton with a 4 p.m. tip-off time.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Jan_19,_2008

Jaguars extend win streak to four

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team overcame a wild, wild West on Saturday and stretched their success streak to four games, beating South Georgia Tech 80-71 in Americus.

Carlos West went wild for the host team, scoring 25 points. But the Jaguars had balance on their side, sharing the ball so much that Kaihrique Irick topped the team in scoring with only 15 points. Vincent Banks, Anthony Miller and Jamail Turner tallied 13 apiece.

Irick also paced the Jaguars in rebounds with eight. GPC trailed 34-33 at halftime but seized control during the second period in moving to 12-8, 3-0 in the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association.

The Jaguars are home on Wednesday night, entertaining Middle Georgia College at 7:30.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Jan_17,_2008

Banks, Holcombe lead GPC charge

The explosion you may have heard from the Georgia Perimeter College Decatur Campus Thursday night was the basketball Jaguars’ offense. It erupted for a season-high points total in racing past Coastal Georgia Community College 95-83.

The Jaguars’ third straight victory lifted them over .500 at 10-9 and almost erased the four-game slide that preceded the streak. They are 2-0 in the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association.

Vincent Banks notched a season-best 31 points, as did Jacquiese Holcombe with 26. Other double-digit producers were Jamail Turner with 14 and Chris Lightner with 12. Chaun Tinney doled out 11 assists.

The verdict was all but sealed at halftime, after which GPC led 64-41.

“We played exceptionally well the first 20 minutes, especially on the defensive end,” coach Alfred Barney said, alluding to 29 caused turnovers for the game. “Our press was very effective.”

The margin widened to 22 points, at 78-56, before the visitors made the final score respectable.

“We lost our composure a little bit in the second half,” Barney said.

The Jaguars, who shot 55 percent from two-point range, hope to maintain their hot hand Saturday afternoon against South Georgia Tech in Americus.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Jan_12,_2008

Hot start for Jaguars in ’08

Two games, two wins for the GPC men’s basketball team. So far, so great in ’08.

The Jaguars, who closed out December with four consecutive defeats, downed Albany Tech 76-61 on Saturday and hoisted themselves back to .500 at 9-9. It was the second straight stress-free victory this month, GPC having jumped ahead 36-19 in the first half and never getting threatened.

Jacquiese Holcombe had the hottest hand for GPC with 23 points. Guards Anthony Miller and Vincent Banks chipped in with 12 apiece, while Jamail Turner muscled up for nine rebounds.

The Jaguars are back home Thursday, playing host to Coast Georgia Community College at 7:30 p.m. on the Decatur campus. It is GPC’s opener in its Georgia Junior College Athletic Association schedule.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Jan_7,_2008

Jaguars start fresh for new year

A new year meant a new trend for the GPC men’s basketball team, which turned the page to 2008 and turned it on for a 78-59 win Monday at home over Atlanta Metro College.

Fresh off of an eight-day break, the Jaguars (8-9) put the brakes on a four-game slide. GPC led by 15 at halftime and by as much as 28 before allowing the last nine points of the game.

Scoring glory was shared by one Jaguar accustomed to such status and another unfamiliar to it. Freshman guard Anthony Miller topped the team with 23 points, one more than frequent scoring leader Vincent Banks.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Dec. 29, 2007

Jaguars continue in cold spell

A pair of double-digit defeats at the Gulf Coast Christmas Classic in Panama City, Fla., over the weekend sent the proud GPC men’s basketball program into a four-game spiral.

The Jaguars dipped to 7-9 with an 85-60 loss to Okaloosa-Walton County on Friday and an 84-72 setback to the host Gulf Coast Community College on Saturday.

Okaloosa’s Keith Ramsey torched the Jaguars with 27 points in the opener as the Raiders (11-1) broke open a four-point halftime lead.

Vincent Banks paced GPC with 21 points against the 19th-ranked team in the latest National Junior College Athletic Association poll.

The verdict evened the season series with Okaloosa, whose only loss all year was 89-79 to the Jaguars in the GPC Tip-off Classic.

The Jaguars responded positively in the second round and led Gulf Coast (14-3) with six minutes remaining until a defensive collapse proved their undoing.

Jacquiese Holcombe topped GPC scorers with 18 points. Banks had an unusually cold night and was held to single figures.

The Jaguars have a week to work on their shortcomings, with Atlanta Metro College next on the agenda Jan. 7 at 7:30 p.m. on the Decatur Campus.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Dec. 16, 2007

Cold spell stings Jaguars

The temperature turned chilly Saturday, and so did GPC’s shooting. The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team sank 28 percent from the field—and only half of that from three-point range—in a 65-56 home-court loss to Aiken (S.C.) Tech.

The setback dropped the Jaguars to 7-7 entering the holiday break, the first time they have stood at .500 since the second game of the season. Aiken has dealt them two defeats.

GPC nosed ahead 22-21 at halftime and kept it suspenseful until Aiken built a 55-42 cushion. The Jaguars doled out just five assists. “We’re not sharing the basketball,” associate head coach David Dennis said, “and we’re having trouble scoring.”

The exception was Jacquiese Holcombe, who poured in 21 points while pulling in 11 rebounds. Vincent Banks scored 15 but hit only three of 12 attempts from the floor.

The Jaguars have until Dec. 28 to begin righting the ship. They play back-to-back days at the Gulf Coast Christmas Classic in Panama City, Fla. They will host Atlanta Metro College on January 7 at 7:30 in the Decatur Campus gym.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Dec. 7, 2007

Spartanburg avenges loss

Where there was a Williis, there was a way—almost.

Reserve guard Kenny Willis nearly brought the cold-shooting GPC men’s basketball team from the dead Thursday night at Spartanburg (S.C.) Methodist. He drilled four three-pointers, the last of which moved the Jaguars to within 49-45 with 6:30 left after they trailed by 18.

But GPC neglected to score another basketball in a 58-48 loss that dropped the Jaguars to 7-6 on the season.

Spartanburg Methodist (7-2), avenging a 60-51 GPC victory in November, held the Jaguars in single digits through most of the first half. The cold shooting was a surprise, as the Jaguars had scored 72 in their previous outing (a three-point win).

The Jaguars return home for their next game at 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15, against Aiken Tech on the Decatur Campus.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Dec. 1, 2007

Jaguars win with balanced attack

Disappointed at the efforts from his two most gifted players in a loss last Friday, head coach Alfred Barney benched Vincent Banks and Jacquiese Holcombe for the start of the next game 17 hours later.

Message received. The talented twosome got back on Barney’s good side as the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team knocked off Clinton Junior College 72-69 on Saturday in Rock Hill, S.C.

The win salvaged a split in the Palmetto state, one day after a 62-57 setback to Aiken Tech.

“We just needed a shakeup,” Barney said of the one-game-only lineup shuffle. “I was tired of the same old stuff.”

He was bothered primarily by the lack of rebounding from his standout pair. Both responded with strong performances and regained their starting status.

“We played better Saturday, with a lot more emotion” than the previous outing, Barney said.

Against Aiken, the Jaguars twice trailed by two points late in the game, only to commit fatal turnovers that cost them a chance to tie or go ahead.

“We didn’t execute down the stretch,” said Barney, attributing it partly to a lack of experience.

The Jaguars take a 7-5 record into a Thursday evening game against another South Carolina team, Spartanburg Methodist at GPC’s Decatur Campus. Tip-off time is 7:30 p.m.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Nov. 28, 2007

Jaguars gain after Thanksgiving victory

The basketball indigestion resulting from a twin stuffing over the Thanksgiving weekend cleared up Tuesday night for the Georgia Perimeter College men’s team.

The Jaguars recovered with an 85-43 victory over Oxford College on the Decatur Campus.

GPC (6-4) slipped out of the NJCAA poll, which ranks the top 20 teams, this week following a pair of setbacks in Niceville, Fla. But defense and teamwork, problems in those games, were back in play against Oxford.

“We played well—shared the ball,” head coach Alfred Barney said. As evidence he pointed to a season-high 25 assists (on 37 field goals). The Jaguars shot 51 percent and had the game put away by halftime with a 44-18 lead.

Vincent Banks and Paul Boea scored 11 points apiece as GPC used its reserves liberally.

This weekend the Jaguars seek to improve on their 0-2 road record with back-to-back games in South Carolina. First, it’s Aiken Tech at 7:30 p.m. on Friday just across the Georgia border. Then, it’s Clinton College in Rock Hill at 2 p.m. on Saturday.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Nov. 26, 2007

GPC falls to No. 1 and No. 20

Defense deserted the GPC men’s basketball team over the weekend in a pair of losses to ranked teams at the Rick Flores Classic in Niceville, Fla.

The Jaguars lost to Okaloosa-Walton College, the host school and co-ranked at No. 20 in the NJCAA coaches’ poll, 100-66 Friday night. The margin was somewhat better against top-rated Chipola College of Marianna, Fla., but an 84-68 setback neglected to restore GPC’s confidence nine games into the season.

“We failed to do what we’re noted for—and that’s defend,” associate head coach David Dennis said. “And we’re not playing as a team. We’re not doing the things that have made our team successful in the past.”

Freshman forward Vincent Banks led the GPC offense with 16 points in each game.

Off to their worst start in years, the Jaguars (5-4) stormed ahead 23-8 against Chipola. But the Indians soon went on a 34-11 run that was the masterwork of Clevin Hannah, who sank 10 consecutive three-point shots.

Against Okaloosa-Walton, the Jaguars were competitive for no more than the first 10 minutes. They managed just 19 points in the first half and never threatened the Raiders.

“Until we decide to play together as a team, this could be a long year for us,” Dennis said.

The Jaguars look to get on track Tuesday night in a 7 p.m. game against Oxford College on the Decatur Campus.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Nov 21, 2007

Jags wear down Ware Academy

It was home, mostly sweet home for the GPC men’s basketball team, which ended a season-launching, seven-game stand on the Decatur Campus Tuesday with a 93-74 win over Ware Academy (formerly North Atlanta Prep).

The Jaguars spotted Ware a 12-point lead at halftime, before overwhelming the visitors 59-28 after intermission.

“We stepped up the defensive intensity in the second half,” associate head coach David Dennis said.

Freshman Vincent Banks exploded for 22 points, while Jacquiese Holcombe and Jamail Turner contributed 16 each and Brody Langston 13. Holcombe and Langston shared rebound honors with eight apiece. Point guard Chaun Tinney pitched in with his usual six assists.

“Banks and Holcombe, who both sat out last year, are starting to round into form,” Dennis said, “just in time for the difficult road ahead.”

The Jaguars hit the highway for the first time all season Friday. The destination is Niceville, Fla., for the OWC Thanksgiving Classic. They open Friday night against host school Oklaloosa-Walton College (5-1), ranked No. 20 in the National Junior College Athletic Association poll. They then must rebound 20 hours later to face No. 1-ranked Chipola College (7-0).

GPC returns home on Tuesday, Nov. 27, to host Oxford College at 7 p.m.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road in south DeKalb County.

 

Nov. 20, 2007

GPC downs Clinton College

Strong rebounding, bench strength and a second-half surge helped pull the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team past Clinton College of Rock Hill, S.C., 77-66 on Monday.

The GPC coaches say it was not a game for the scrapbook.

“About the only good thing that happened was we won,” associate head coach David Dennis said.

He did come up with a positive: “We had some guys coming off the bench who stepped up.”

The Jaguars (4-2) started out on the rough side and held only a one-point halftime lead. Then they widened the gap into a comfort zone and kept it in the low teens most of the way.

“We played better in the second half—not a lot better, but better,” Dennis said.

Freshmen Chris Lightner and Vincent Banks scored 14 and 13, respectively. The Jaguars out-rebounded their foe for the fifth time this season, Azive Armour hauling in 12 and Brody Langston 11.

The Jaguars may be fighting fatigue as they suit up Tuesday for a 7:30 tip-off with North Atlanta Prep, GPC’s fourth game in five days. Over the weekend, the Jaguars take the long ride to Niceville, Fla., for the OWC Thanksgiving Classic at Okaloosa-Walton College.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road in south DeKalb County.

 

Nov. 17, 2007

Jaguars split in Thanksgiving Classic

The GPC men’s basketball team did the splits for the second straight weekend in two-night, four-team events on the Decatur campus.

This weekend, the Jaguars opened their Thanksgiving Classic by defeating University of South Carolina-Salkehatchie 93-70 Friday evening. But they could not repeat the act Saturday, getting outrun by Brunswick (N.C.) Community College 102-88.

The Jaguars also went 1-1 in their Tip-Off Classic the previous weekend.

GPC trailed 43-41 at halftime Friday, then lit it up by inducing 25 turnovers and sharing the ball enough for 21 assists.

Vincent Banks scored 24 points, 17 in the first half. Jacquise Holcombe helped out with 15 points and three teammates edged into double figures with 10 apiece.

Point guard Chaun Tinney achieved his second consecutive six-assist, no-turnover game.

Against Brunswick, Jamail Turner scored 17 points to lead the Jaguars, with Holcombe contributing 13.

After a day of rest Sunday, the Jaguars (3-2) resume their hectic seven-game, season-opening home stand. They welcome Clinton College of Rock Hill, S.C., for a 7 p.m. game on Monday, then North Atlanta Prep for a 7:30 p.m. tip-off on Tuesday.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

 

Nov 14, 2007

Tinney’s debut sparks GPC

Chaun Tinney’s basketball homecoming to Decatur was delayed by belated completion of paperwork. Better late than never for both the former Columbia High School standout and Georgia Perimeter College.

After missing GPC’s first two games, the Jaguars’ new point guard authored a highly efficient debut Tuesday night with six assists and no turnovers in a 70-61 home-court victory over Spartanburg (S.C.) Methodist.

The Jaguars (2-1) split two games in their Tip-Off Classic last weekend before Tinney’s eligibility was cleared up resulting from his transfer from Southeastern Illinois College.

His ball distribution lifted three teammates into double-figure scoring—Vincent Banks with 15 points, Jacquise Holcombe with 14 and Azive Armour with 10.

The Jaguars saw a 10-point halftime lead all but vanish as the visitors pulled to within a point. A GPC run moved the margin up to 15 before Spartanburg Methodist waged a light rally to compress the final spread into single digits.

“We defended fairly well,” assistant coach David Dennis said. “We still have to do a better job of closing games out.’

GPC, ranked No. 16 in the National Junior College Athletic Association preseason poll, continues its season-opening seven-game home stand with its Thanksgiving Classic this weekend. The Jaguars take on South Carolina Salkehatchie on Friday at 5 p.m. and Brunswick (N.C.) Community College on Saturday at 2 p.m.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road in south DeKalb County.

 

Nov. 12, 2007

Jaguars split at GPC Tip-Off Classic

For starters, it was not a classic beginning for the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars’ men’s basketball team in the GPC Tip-off Classic that launched the regular season.

With only five players back from last season, none of whom saw extensive playing time, the Jaguars still had drawn an impressive No. 16 ranking in the National Junior College Athletic Association Division 1 preseason poll.

But in Friday’s season opener, the inexperience showed as they fell behind 30-8 to Miami Dade Community College. They did manage to close the final gap to nine, 77-68, and carried the momentum over to Saturday’s game against No. 9-ranked Okaloosa-Walton College (Fla.).

The result: an 89-79 victory over OWC, a team that, like Georgia Perimeter, played in the NJCAA national tournament last year.

The win left the Jaguars 1-1 entering their next game Tuesday night at 7:30 on the Decatur campus, hosting Spartanburg (S.C.) Methodist.

“We’ve got a lot of young guys,” assistant coach David Dennis said of the slow start. “We played a lot better from the second half of the Miami Dade game on.”

The Jaguars, after trailing by 30, wiggled to within seven points Friday, only to watch the winners sink 21 second-half free throws. Jamail Turner and Azive Armour shared scoring honors for GPC with 15 points apiece.

Rebounding and defense were the winning ingredients Saturday. GPC pulled down 23 offensive boards and held an 11-rebound advantage overall while restricting Oklaloosa standout Tay Waller to six points.

Five Jaguars reached double figures in scoring, a balanced attack paced by Vincent Banks with 15 points along with 10 rebounds.

All four teams emerged from the weekend with break-even records. Atlanta Metro, pounded by Okaloosa-Walton 81-50 on Friday, recovered to edge Miami Dade 80-79.

The Jaguars’ home games are played at the Decatur Campus gymnasium, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur.