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June 9, 2009

Quinton Thomas signs with GPC

Southside High School graduate Quinton Thomas recently signed to play basketball at Georgia Perimeter College. Thomas was named the High School Sports Report’s 2008 Athletic Association Player of the Year, and he was All-State, All-County and All-Region twice. As a senior in the preseason, he was among the top 5 players overall and in the AA.

During his past two seasons at Southside, Thomas was the team’s co-most valuable player. He also participated in the North Carolina vs. South Carolina All-Star game and the Greenville County vs. Spartanburg County Fellowship of Christian Athletes All-Star game.

 

 

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March 7, 2009

South Georgia Tech ends GPC’s title run

A valiant effort against tough odds by the Georgia Perimeter College men’s college basketball team fell just shy Saturday as the Jaguars crashed on the road to the National Junior College Athletics Association tournament.

GPC, the second seed, lost 76-71 to top seed South Georgia Technical College on the Jets’ home court in the championship game of the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association (Region 17) tourney.

The Jaguars, defending champions, led 47-42 in the second half. They ended a 7-0 run by South Georgia with a basket for a 50-49 count but never were in front again.

For GPC, which ends 19-14, reserve guard Dexter Shaw tallied a season-high 21 points. Anthony Miller had 11, while Michael Tippins had 10 points and 10 rebounds, along with five blocks.

Tournament Most Valuable Player Jae Crowder amassed 27 points, 20 in the second half, and 11 rebounds. Crowder also had been named Region 17 Player of the Year last week.

A Tippins hoop on a rebound sliced the Jets’ edge to 69-68 with 1:11 remaining. South Georgia (27-7) ran off six straight points to claim the first-place trophy.

The Jets, ranked 21st nationally in the NJCAA poll, are unbeaten at home this season, their closest call coming in a one-point win over the Jaguars. GPC took the home game in the series by three points.

The loss ends a run by GPC of three consecutive Region 17 titles and trips to the NJCAA national tournament in Kansas. Under head coach Alfred Barney, the Jaguars have gone to nationals in seven of the past 12 seasons.

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March 6, 2009

Jaguars to face Jets for region title

Though leading for nearly the entire game, the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team could not breathe easy until the final buzzer Friday against Truett-McConnell College.

The Jaguars’ 70-62 victory in the semifinals of the Region 17 tournament for Georgia Junior College Athletics Association members promoted them to the region championship game at 3 p.m. Saturday in Americus. They will meet top-seed-and-host South Georgia Technical College, which defeated Albany Tech 75-71 Friday.

Sophomore guard Anthony Miller pumped in 19 points to lead second-seeded GPC, followed by Jamail Turner, a sophomore guard-forward, with 18. Norris Rumph added 11 and Omar Thomas had 10.

Georgia Perimeter (19-13) pushed ahead by eight points deep into the second half, then found itself ahead by only three with about a minute remaining.

The Jaguars managed to thwart a possible game-tying possession, and then began a parade to the free-throw line as Truett (17-15) fouled repeatedly.

GPC sank its shots to complete a three-game sweep this season of the Bears, who were paced by 16 points from Duce Jackson.

Strong defense saved the day for the Jaguars, who shot only 30 percent from the field and committed 24 turnovers.

The Jaguars split with South Georgia Tech during the season. They defeated the Jets 58-55 at home in January but lost a heartbreaker 68-67 in Americus in February when Turner’s nearly half-court basket didn’t count because the final buzzer had sounded.

Georgia Perimeter is seeking its fourth-straight trip to the National Junior College Athletic Association tournament in Kansas. But to get to the next step, the District 10 title game, GPC first must stop the freshman backcourt duo that propels the Jets.

GJCAA Player of the Year Jae Crowder foiled GPC in Americus with a field goal and two foul shots in the closing seconds. He finished second in conference scoring with 17 points per game. Fellow guard Antonio Bell, an All-Region selection on the freshman team, averages 13 per game.

The Jets (26-6) are ranked No. 21 in the latest National Junior College Athletic Association coaches poll.

The game marks the second consecutive year that GPC and South Georgia Tech will play for the region title. Last March the Jaguars won the championship game 80-68 on their home court.

Visit www.gjcaa.org/main/tournament-brackets.php for Region 17 tournament results.

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March 5, 2009

Jaguars advance in region tourney

Michael Tippins collected 15 rebounds and 11 points.

One down, two to go for the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team in its quest for a fourth straight Region 17 tournament title.

The Jaguars (18-13) polished off Atlanta Metro 66-57 Thursday in Americus, setting up a semifinal match on Friday at 5:30 p.m. with Truett-McConnell College.The finals for the Georgia Junior College Athletics Association (Region 17) crown is Saturday.

After falling behind 5-0, GPC rushed to a 14-point halftime lead. Atlanta Metro (13-17) charged to within a point midway in the second half and had a chance to go ahead.

But the defense stiffened and the Jaguars went on to their second win in three games this season over Atlanta Metro.

Ken Taylor’s 16 points led the Jaguars in scoring.

“We played pretty well the first half,” GPC coach Alfred Barney said. “The second half, we got a little sluggish. Overall, it was a great team effort.”

Barney singled out Michael Tippins for extra praise. “He really stepped up,” Barney said of the 6-foot-9 sophomore, who had 15 rebounds with 11 points.

Ken Taylor topped Jaguars scorers with 16. Anthony Miller had 11 and Jamail Turner 10.

Ken Taylor’s 16 points led the Jaguars in scoring.

During the season, GPC defeated Truett-McConnell in both of their conference match-ups, 88-78 and 82-62. The Bears (17-14) defeated Middle Georgia College 61-58 in overtime Thursday in their first-round game. The winner of Friday’s contest will face the winner of Albany Tech versus South Georgia Tech in the championship game Saturday at 3 p.m.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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March 2, 2009

Turner, Miller named to All-Region team

Jamail Turner and Anthony Miller, the dynamic duo for Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball, received high honors over the weekend. Both sophomores were named to the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association (Region 17) All-Region Team.

Turner finished runner-up to Jae Crowder of South Georgia Tech as Player of the Year and was named to the first-team all-region squad.uad.

Miller was recognized as Defensive Player of the Year and made second-team all-region.

The pair, the only players from last season’s region championship team who returned to the team, led the Jaguars to a share of the 2008-09 regular season championship with South Georgia Technical College.

A 6-foot-four guard-forward, Turner hails from Swainsboro High School in Nunez, Ga.

Miller (known by fans as “B.J.”) is a 6-1 guard from Liberty County High in Hinesville, Ga.

GPC enters the conference tournament as the No. 2 seed, having lost out on the top seed on a tie-breaker, which means South Georgia Tech is the playoff host in Americus.

The Jaguars (17-13) are pitted against Atlanta Metro (13-15) at 4 p.m. Thursday in the quarterfinals. The teams split two games this season.

A win would send GPC into the semifinals of the eight-team tournament at 5:30 p.m. Friday, meeting the winner of Thursday’s contest between Truett-McConnell College and Middle Georgia College. The title game is at 3 p.m. Saturday.

Visit www.gjcaa.org/main/tournament-brackets.php to follow the Jaguars at the region tournament.

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Feb. 21, 2009

GPC clinches first-place finish

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team moved into first place in the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association (Region 17) standings Saturday.

Now the Jaguars must wait to see if they will remain there by themselves for the fourth consecutive year or share the regular season title.

GPC wrapped up its regular season by downing Coastal Georgia Community College 78-64 in Brunswick. The verdict left the Jaguars (17-13 overall) at 11-3 in the GJCAA—a half-game ahead of South Georgia Tech, which faces Gordon College on Thursday.

If Tech wins its last game, the top seed in the Region 17 tournament will be determined by a tie-breaker formula—or a coin flip. At stake is the home-court advantage throughout the tourney.

Regardless, Saturday’s clincher means that the Jaguars have won or shared the regular season conference championship for four straight years.

Coastal Georgia (6-6, 20-7) closed to within three points during the second half Saturday. Then GPC found some breathing room by pulling away from the Mariners.

Jamail Turner paced the Jaguars with 21 points and 10 rebounds. Other double-figure scorers were Norris Rumph with 11 and Steve McNabb with 10.

The region playoffs begin March 5.

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Feb. 19, 2009

Jaguars win, eye title clincher

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team on Thursday began a critical two-game road trip that will conclude the regular season. At stake is whether the Jaguars will win a fourth consecutive regular season title in the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association (Region 17).

They got halfway to that objective with an impressive 82-62 win over Truett-McConnell College Thursday in Cleveland, Ga.

GPC heads to Brunswick for its final regular season game against Coastal Georgia Community College. A victory will clinch at least a tie for the GJCAA regular season championship.

The Jaguars (10-3, 16-13) did not break open the game until the second half, following a seven-point lead at the break.

Three-point marksmanship was a key. Anthony Miller hit five of eight triples enroute to 21 points, while Jamail Turner sank four for seven from behind the arc for the bulk of his 17 points.

Turner snared eight rebounds and Miller had a pair of steals.

Steve McNabb and Omar Thomas tallied 12 points each for the Jaguars.

The Bears, who dropped their January game with GPC 88-78 in Decatur, dipped to 4-8, 14-13.

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Feb. 14, 2009

Jaguars bedeviled by missteps

The basketball seemed slippery to the Georgia Perimeter College men on Saturday. As a result, victory slipped away from the Jaguars in a 77-72 setback to Summer Hill Prep at GPC’s Decatur gym.

The Jaguars bounced ahead 45-37 at halftime, but turnovers limited them to 27 second-half points against the Blue Devils from Cartersville. GPC wound up with 30 giveaways, wiping out a 12-rebound advantage for the game. Travis Rasco and Omar Thomas corralled seven rebounds each.

Jamail Turner scored 18 points Anthony Miller had 13, with Thomas and Steve McNabb following at 11 points apiece.

Darrell Waters came off the Summer Hill bench to score a team-high 15 points, all in 15 1/2 minutes.

One consolation for the Jaguars (15-13) is that the loss came out of conference. They take a 9-3 Georgia Junior College Athletic Association record Thursday to Cleveland, Ga., where they will meet Truett-McConnell College (14-12, 4-7). The Jaguars lead the conference by a half game over South Georgia Tech (22-6, 8-3).

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Feb. 11, 2009

Jaguars star in Homecoming show

In perhaps its most commanding performance of the season, the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team pounced on Middle Georgia College early and coasted to an 88-71 Homecoming victory Wednesday night on the Decatur Campus.

The win allowed GPC (15-12, 9-3) to separate itself in second place from third-place Middle Georgia (14-9, 5-3) in the Region 17 standings.

The Jaguars raced to a 52-25 halftime lead before the Warriors made it more respectable at the end. Jamail Turner and Anthony Miller poured in 15 and 14 points, respectively in the period. Miller dropped in four of five 3-point shots, and Turner hit two of three.

Nevertheless, head coach Alfred Barney wasn’t totally satisfied with the second half.

“We had a real good first half, but I was disappointed in the last nine minutes,” he said. “If you want to win championships, you’ve got to learn how to close it out late in the game.”

Sharpshooting GPC hit 53 percent from the floor and was especially accurate on three-pointers, nailing 56 percent.

Miller finished with 21 points, 12 of them on threes, and added five rebounds. Turner was close behind with 19 points, accented by six rebounds and four steals. Omar Thomas chipped in with 13 points.

The triumph not only sweetened the homecoming festivities but also avenged an 89-86 overtime loss at Middle Georgia in January that ended GPC’s 5-0 conference-leading streak.

The Jaguars have an early noon tip-off Saturday in their final regular-season home game against Summer Hill Prep.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Feb. 7, 2009

Split second determines Jaguars’ fate

Jamail Turner capped another spectacular performance for the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team Saturday with a basket from nearly half-court.

Alas, the potential game-winner did not count because it came a fraction of a second after time expired. The Jaguars’ initial joy turned to heartbreak over a 68-67 conference setback to South Georgia Technical College in Americus.

A rematch of GPC’s three-point win on its court in January, the game was a key Georgia Junior College Athletic Association (Region 17) showdown—first place was at stake.

Turner raced upcourt for his stunning shot after the Jets went ahead by one on Jae Crowder’s basket and foul shot with six seconds left. Turner wound up with 24 points and 10 rebounds.

Earlier, the Jaguars (14-12, 8-3) pried open a tight game and went ahead 51-44, only to see the Jets scramble to a 53-53 tie. Tech, unbeaten at home, took its first lead in 13 minutes with 90 seconds left, but the Jaguars seized it back and were up three before Tech’s final surge.

Markell Smith scored 16 and Antonio Bell 15 for the Jets (21-5, 8-2).

The Jaguars, now in second place, enjoy the comforts of home Wednesday with a 7:30 p.m. game against Middle Georgia College. The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Feb. 4, 2009

Turner leaves Highlanders dizzy

Georgia Perimeter was rocking because Jamail Turner was on a roll Wednesday night.

The men’s basketball team, thanks to a season-best 31 points from Turner, defeated Gordon College 90-70 on the Highlanders’ home floor.

Turner was accurate on 12 of 19 shots from the field including 3-of-8 threes. He also had five rebounds.

GPC sidekicks Eric Hairston and Anthony Miller hit for 15 and 12, respectively.

The Jaguars (14-11, 8-2 GJCAA), held a mere one-point lead at halftime. But Gordon, winless in league competition at 0-9 and 11-13 overall, saw the visitors move gradually ahead. The widest margin was 22 just before the final buzzer.

DeAndre Cannon paced Gordon with 20 points in a rematch of GPC’s much narrower win over the Highlanders a month ago on the Decatur campus. The Jaguars are back on the road Saturday afternoon, taking on South Georgia Tech in Americus.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Jan. 31, 2009

GPC keeps out of Titans’ reach

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team, battle-tested from numerous tight games this season, eked out another narrow win Saturday.

The Jaguars (13-11, 7-2 GJCAA) outlasted Albany Tech 57-53 on the Titans’ home floor to remain in contention for the GJCAA regular season title.

Down by two points at the half, the Jaguars rode their defense into the lead. Albany hit only 15 percent on three-point attempts after intermission -- and helped out the visitors by dropping in just 52 percent of their free throws.

Jamail Turner had the Jaguars’ best all-around game with 14 points and 11 rebounds. Leading scorer was Anthony Miller with 17.

Marcus Jackson topped the Titans with 17.

GPC enters Wednesday night’s contest at Gordon College at 7:30 p.m.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Jan. 29, 2009

Turner spurs Jaguars past TMC

A foul-fest went Georgia Perimeter College’s way Thursday, when the men’s basketball team won a parade to the free throw line over Truett-McConnell College.

Sophomore guard/forward Jamail Turner poured in 22 points.

Sophomore guard/forward Jamail Turner poured in 22 points.

The Jaguars snapped a two-game losing streak in the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association and climbed back above .500 with an 88-78 victory on the Decatur campus.

GPC triumphed despite committing 34 fouls, which sent the Bears to the stripe for 41 attempts. However, the visitors were whistled for 33 hacks of their own, leading to 45 foul shots by the Jaguars. Both made 34.

The Jaguars, 6-2 in the GJCAA and 12-11 overall, broke open a three-point halftime lead and surged safely ahead by 72-57.

Jamail Turner had a busy night for the winners with 22 points and six rebounds. Anthony Miller and Travis Rasco pitched in with 13 points each, while Ken Taylor added 11.

Duce Jackson paced the Bears (12-8, 3-4) in points (23), rebounds (seven) and assists (five.)

The Jaguars catch their breath before heading to south Georgia for a Saturday matinee against Albany Technical College. Their next home game is Wednesday, Feb. 11, at 7:30 p.m. against Middle Georgia College. The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Jan. 26, 2009

Moon rises above GPC

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team was not exactly over the moon, as the saying goes, Monday night.

Rather, it was Moon over GPC.

Jeff Moon of Atlanta Metro College was unstoppable, pouring in 27 points and corraling 11 rebounds in a virtual one-man show. His efforts helped the Red-Eyed Panthers hold off the Jaguars 69-67 on the Decatur campus and avenge an 86-79 overtime win two weeks earlier.

It marked the second straight narrow defeat for GPC (11-11, 5-2 GJCAA) which fell in overtime last Wednesday.

Jamail Turner was valiant in defeat, notching 23 points primarily on 5-for-9 from three-point land. His teammates were a combined 2-for-18 from beyond the arc.

Steve McNabb scored 15 points and had a hand in more than that amount with eight assists.

The Jaguars accumulated 16 steals and limited Atlanta Metro to one three-pointer. But they sent the Red-Eyed Panthers to the foul stripe 34 times, with the visitors sinking 22. GPC was 10-for-14.

The Jaguars can climb back above .500 against Truett-McConnell on Thursday. The home game begins at 7:30 p.m.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Jan. 21, 2009

Jaguars suffer first league loss in OT

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team went down to Cochran, Ga., Wednesday and went down to defeat in excruciating fashion.

The Jaguars had their five-game win streak halted by Middle Georgia College 89-86 in overtime. It was their first setback in Georgia Junior College Athletic Association play, leaving them 11-10 overall and 5-1 in the conference.

Jamail Turner accumulated 18 points, 11 rebounds, five assists and three steals before fouling out with three minutes left in overtime. He was one of three Jaguars to commit five fouls.

Steve McNabb pitched in with 17 points, and Miller had 15.

GPC led narrowly for much of the game, by no more than eight points, until the Warriors (9-6, 1-1) surged ahead with about five minutes left. The Jaguars pulled even at the end and nearly won, but Ken Taylor’s shot off of a rebound missed.

The extra period was back-and-forth, with GPC on top by as much as three and Middle Georgia by four. The Jaguars trailed by three and began a possession with eight seconds left but settled for Anthony Miller’s layup.

Two seconds remained as Middle Georgia inbounded and drew an instant foul. Both free throws fell in, and the visitors missed a half-court prayer at the buzzer.

Georgia Perimeter is back home for a Monday night game on the Decatur Campus at 7:30 against cross-town rival Atlanta Metropolitan College. The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Jan. 17, 2009

GPC grabs lead in region standings

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team remained unbeaten in conference play Saturday, but not without some anxious moments in a battle for first place.

The Jaguars’ fifth Georgia Junior College Athletic Association victory was also their closest, 58-55 over South Georgia Technical College on GPC’s Decatur Campus. The win vaulted GPC into sole possession of first place in the GJCAA (Region 17) and dropped South Georgia Tech to No. 2.

Jamail Miller scored three of his 12 points from the foul line in the waning seconds to put away the Jets.

GPC frittered away a 10-point lead and trailed by four until Miller nailed a three-point shot and Steve McNabb dropped in a layup. McNabb was the Jaguars’ most prolific scorer with 16 points on 8-for-10 from the field.

The Jets had tied it when Turner drew a foul with 12 seconds left. He sank one of two freebies.

Miller blocked the Jets’ next shot attempt. Turner was then fouled and closed out the scoring on two free throws with 1.5 seconds left.

The Jaguars (11-9, 5-0) clamped down all afternoon on South Georgia Tech (17-4, 4-1), which hit only 29 percent from the field, including 12.5 percent on threes.

The league leaders hit the road Wednesday night for a game against Middle Georgia College (9-6, 0-1) in Cochran. They return home to host Atlanta Metropolitan College on Monday, January 26, at 7:30 p.m.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Jan. 15, 2009

Taylor leads GPC past No. 21 Mariners

A treacherous nonconference schedule continues to pay dividends for the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team.

Led by Ken Taylor’s 20 points, the Jaguars remained unbeaten after four Georgia Junior College Athletic Association games with a 93-75 triumph over College of Coastal Georgia Thursday on the Decatur Campus.

Coastal Georgia came into the game ranked No. 21 in the National Junior College Athletic Association poll. The victory vaulted GPC to 10-9 overall, its first time all season above .500.

Taylor sank all but one of his 11 field-goal attempts, and he also led Georgia Perimeter with eight rebounds. Jamail Turner was second in command with 18 points and eight rebounds. Omar Thomas chipped in with 16 points, Anthony Miller 12.

Never headed on their home floor, the Jaguars bolted to a 53-31 halftime lead and expanded it to 69-43 before the Mariners (9-6) narrowed the gap at the end.

GPC’s perfect league record will be tested Saturday against tough South Georgia Tech at 4 p.m. on the Decatur Campus.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Jan. 12, 2009

Miller, McNabb lead Jaguars to .500

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team is even-steven, and it can thank a Steven on the roster helping bring the record to even.

Anthony "B.J." Miller scored 23 points and Steve McNabb contributed 17 Monday as the Jaguars outlasted Atlanta Metropolitan College 86-79 in overtime on the Red-eyed Panthers’ court.

Miller, a sophomore guard, had a hot hand, hitting 9 of 11 from the foul stripe.

The Jaguars (9-9, 3-0) trailed by 13 at the half before rallying furiously to force overtime in a game so intense that Atlanta Metro’s coach was ejected. The extra period belonged to GPC, which outscored the Panthers 9-2.

Michael Tippins and Omar Thomas added 11 points apiece for Georgia Perimeter.

The Jaguars, off to a 3-0 start in the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association (Region 17), aim for their first winning record of the season against Coastal Georgia Community College at 7:30 p.m. Thursday on GPC’s Decatur Campus. It will be a challenge because Coastal Georgia (13-1) is ranked No. 21 in the National Junior College Athletic Association poll. The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Jan. 10, 2009

Balanced attack downs Albany Tech

The long climb back to a .500 record is one step away for the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team.

The Jaguars, who were 2-7 at the end of November, improved to 8-9 Saturday with a decisive 77-59 win over Albany Tech on GPC’s Decatur campus.

The keys to victory were balanced scoring that resulted in five double-figure scorers and a ball-hawking defense that induced 28 Titans turnovers. Head coach Alfred Barney points to another key factor.

"In the second half, we played with emotion," he said. "If we continue to do that we have a chance in this region."

Anthony Miller scored 16 points, a pair more than Ken Taylor, who latched onto 10 rebounds. Omar Thomas and Jamail Turner tallied 11 points each, while Steve McNabb had 10.

Miller and Turner combined for nine steals as GPC’s defense was dominant, especially early in the second half.

In a seesaw first half, Albany Tech held a seven-point lead at one point. But the Jaguars took a seven-point halftime lead, and it ballooned to 66-45 after the intermission as half of the Titan’s turnovers were created by thefts. GPC controlled the game after that spurt.

Barney said that the second half resembled the team’s efforts in Florida over the holiday break, when the Jaguars lost two at the Gulf Coast Community College Holiday Classic in Panama City, Fla.

“We showed a lot of emotion in Florida,” Barney said. “Even though we lost, the effort was there, and I was glad to see that.”

The Jaguars can pull their record to break-even Monday at 7:30 p.m. in a cross-town game at Atlanta Metro.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Jan. 7, 2009

Jaguars open region play with win

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team relied on defense to ring in the new year successfully with a 69-62 victory Wednesday night over Gordon College. It also rang in the Jaguars’ Region 17 (Georgia Junior College Athletic Association) schedule on a positive note.

The Jaguars (7-9, 1-0 region) were frigid from the floor in their home gym, shooting just 33 percent. But the Highlanders hit their attempts at the same pace, which included a mere 1-for-21 on three-point launches. With 27 turnovers to boot, they could not mount enough scoring to challenge GPC.

Gordon (9-4) entered with a four-game victory streak, which indicates the impact of GPC’s stout full-court pressure.

The Jaguars led from the opening basket, but Gordon freshman Byron Simmons slammed in a rebound-dunk midway through the first half to give the Highlanders their first lead, 16-15.

Undeterred, GPC went on a 14-2 run and finished the half with a 33-24 lead, powered by Anthony “B.J.” Miller’s 12 points.

GPC broadened the lead to 18 points early in the second half and held on. Miller finished with 15 points, followed by 14 from Jamail Turner, who fouled out after only 26 minutes of action. Miller also posted 8 rebounds and 4 assists, leading the team in three categories.

Continuing a busy January, GPC hosts Albany Tech at noon Saturday on the Decatur Campus. Next week’s schedule includes a cross-town trip to Atlanta Metro on Jan. 12 and a home stand with Coastal Georgia and South Georgia Tech on Jan. 15 and 17, respectively. Coastal Georgia is ranked No. 21 in the National Junior College Athletic Association coaches’ poll. The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Dec. 29, 2008

Commodores edge GPC in overtime

On the brink of its most impressive victory this season, the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team could not close the deal Monday.

The Jaguars succumbed in overtime 83-78 to Gulf Coast Community College at the Commodores’ Holiday Classic in Panama City, Fla., a bitter outcome after they rallied from 15 points down with 8:41 left.

GPC (6-9) was unable to capitalize in the foul department. The visitors sank only half of their 30 tries and failed to benefit from Gulf Coast fouling out three players. The Commodores were 28 of 42 from the line.

Travis Rosco’s layup with 48 seconds in regulation moved GPC ahead 67-66. The Commodores (15-3) tied it on a free throw with a half-minute left, and neither team scored again until overtime.

Two Commodores combined for 10 consecutive foul shots in the extra period. Gabriel Charley, who scored 21, accounted for eight.

Anthony Miller paced the Jaguars with 17 points but was held scoreless in OT. Norris Rumph, Jamail Turner and Ken Taylor tallied 12 each. Turner had 13 rebounds and Taylor 12 as GPC flexed its muscle on the boards.

The Jaguars ring in the new year on Jan. 7 at home against Gordon College at 7:30 p.m. It opens their Georgia Junior College Athletic Association (Region 17) schedule.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Dec. 28, 2008

Jaguars fall to No. 5 Raiders

A four-game win streak forged by the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team ended emphatically Sunday.

The Jaguars ran into an unbeaten foe, nationally fifth-ranked Northwest Florida State, and fell 94-69 on the opening day of the Gulf Coast Holiday Classic in Panama City, Fla.

The Raiders (15-0) were never headed as they constructed a 15-point halftime lead. Robert Sanders paced a balanced scoring attack with 23 points.

Jamail Turner and Norris Rumph tallied 16 and 15 points, respectively, for GPC (6-8). The Jaguars will play host school Gulf Coast Community College on Monday.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Dec. 13, 2008

GPC victory streak continues

The holiday interlude could not come at a worse time for the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team.

Well, most everybody welcomes the break, but the Jaguars might prefer that it come at another time. Their win streak grew to four Saturday with their most lopsided victory of the season, 90-62 over Aiken Technical College (S.C.) on the Decatur Campus.

GPC (6-7) built a 48-30 lead at halftime and expanded it to 87-50 before the Knights made it slightly more respectable at the end.

The Jaguars benefited from scoring balance. Freshman guard Travis Rasco enjoyed his most productive game of the year with 17 points on 8-for-9 shooting and five steals. Jamail Turner matched him with 17 points. Dexter Shaw contributed 15 and Anthony Miller 12.

Lance James accounted for more than half of Aiken’s offense by piling up 36 points.

GPC, hoping to resume its hot hand after two weeks off, will face a rigorous test in the Gulf Coast Christmas Classic opener Dec. 28 in Panama City, Fla. The Jaguars will meet undefeated Northwest Florida State College (formerly Okaloosa-Walton), ranked No. 5 in the National Junior College Athletic Association poll.

They then play host Gulf Coast Community College on Dec. 29.

GPC will open its Georgia Junior College Athletic Association schedule (Region 17) on January 7, hosting Gordon College at 7:30 p.m. on the Decatur Campus. Last season the Jaguars won the region championship. The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Dec. 11, 2008

Turner leads Jaguars to third straight win

Georgia Perimeter College’s challenging early-season basketball schedule is serving it well in December. The Jaguars (5-7), after facing many top junior-college teams last month, took their third straight win Thursday, 72-67 over Spartanburg Methodist College on the Decatur Campus.

Jamail Turner scored 19 points in the home-court victory.

Jamail Turner scored 19 points in the home-court victory.

With a 52-36 advantage on the boards and stout defense that forced the Pioneers into 34 percent shooting, GPC trailed only for a few seconds. Jamail Turner paced the Jaguars with 19 points. Omar Thomas scored 10, supplemented by seven rebounds.

GPC has fallen into a dangerous habit of building large leads, then hanging on for dear life at the end. Thursday, the Jaguars saw a 58-38 edge shrivel to five points. Twenty-eight turnovers were largely to blame.

The Jaguars have notched two of their five wins against SMC, which lost by nine points at its home court in South Carolina.

GPC can enter the holidays on a four-game roll by beating Aiken Technical College at home Saturday. Tip-off is 3 p.m. The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

 

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Dec. 9, 2008

Miller paces GPC to win

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team rode Anthony Miller’s shoulders to an exciting 88-85 win Tuesday over Chattanooga State in the Decatur gym.

Anthony (B. J.) Miller led GPC with 22 points and 12 rebounds.

Anthony Miller led GPC with 22 points and 12 rebounds.

The Jaguars, avenging a 105-80 setback at Chattanooga in the season opener, improved to 4-7 thanks to Miller’s 22 points and 12 rebounds. He sank 5 of 7 from three-point range.

Three teammates attained double figures—Jamail Turner with 17, Steve McNabb with 13 and Norris Rumph with 12.

The Jaguars withstood 26 points and 18 rebounds from Andrew Woods and ended an eight-game win streak for the Tigers (11-3).

GPC broke open a one-point halftime lead and seemed safely ahead at 68-56. But the Tigers rallied to close within three at the end.

The Jaguars are back home Thursday to confront Spartanburg Methodist College at 7:30 p.m. It’s a rematch of the season’s second game, a 75-66 GPC triumph.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Dec. 2, 2008

Jaguars down Oxford College

Balanced scoring in college basketball usually trumps one player dominating his squad in points.

So it was Tuesday when the Georgia Perimeter College basketball team (3-7) placed five men in low double figures to knock off Oxford College 87-60 at the Eagles’ gym in Covington.

Anthony Miller led the Jaguars with 15 points. Close behind were Norris Rumph and Travis Rasco with 12 each, Jamail Turner with 11 and Michael Tippins with 10.

The Eagles (3-6) got more than half of their points from Peter Ricks, who had 34.

The Jaguars begin a stretch of three homes games in five days with a face-off against Chattanooga State at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 9. They host Spartanburg Methodist on Thursday at 7 p.m., followed by Aiken Technical College Saturday at 3 p.m.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Nov. 29, 2008

GPC scares another top-10 team

For the second straight day, the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team pushed a top-10 opponent to the brink.

Alas, the Jaguars could not finish the deal Saturday, succumbing to Northwest Florida State College 78-72 at the Rick Flores Classic in Niceville, Fla.

The Raiders (9-0), ranked No. 7 in the National Junior College Athletic Association poll, withstood a pair of rallies that narrowed their lead to four points, the latter with 10 seconds left. The host team had constructed a 14-point halftime lead.

GPC was edged Friday by No. 2 Chipola Junior College 75-67.

The Jaguars (2-7), who dropped an 11-point decision to Northwest Florida two weeks ago, were paced by 21 points from Anthony Miller and 19 from Jamail Turner. Miller drilled 5 of 7 three-point attempts.

Jamar Sanders scored 20 for Northwest Florida.

The Jaguars are back in Georgia for a Tuesday game at Oxford College, beginning at 7 p.m. Their next home game is Tuesday, Dec. 9, versus Chattanooga State Technical Community College, starting at 8 p.m.

The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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Nov. 28, 2008

Jaguars pester No. 2 Chipola

If moral victories count in college basketball, score one for the Georgia Perimeter men’s team Friday.

The Jaguars (2-6) hung close with Chipola Junior College (Fla.), the No. 2 ranked team in the National Junior College Athletic Association poll, but suffered a 75-67 defeat. The game was part of the opening night schedule at the Rick Flores Classic in Niceville, Fla.

GPC trailed 35-29 at the half. The Jaguars remained competitive for the duration, unlike their Thanksgiving weekend meeting last season when then-No. 1 Chipola breezed 100-66.

Jamail Turner’s hot hand kept the Jaguars within reach as he nailed five three-point shots, which accounted for most of his 24 points. Steve McNabb added 12 points.

Casey Mitchell was top gun for Chipola (8-1) with 23.

In the other first-round game, host school Okaloosa-Walton County whipped Mississippi Elite Christian Academy 112-72.

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

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Nov. 22, 2008

Clinton College pulls away from GPC

A balanced scoring attack, which proved a winning formula the night before, failed to pay off Saturday for the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team in a 77-70 loss to Clinton Junior College (S.C.).

The Jaguars (2-5) wound up with a split of their Thanksgiving Classic on the Decatur Campus.

GPC spread the wealth offensively in a tight game as Steve McNabb rang up 14 points. Anthony Miller had 13, Omar Thomas and Travis Rasco 12 apiece and Stephen Davis 11.

Tippins also topped the team in assists with seven. Thomas led in rebounds with 10.

Clinton lacked GPC’s balance but it didn’t matter as Heath White poured in 23 points. After trailing at the half, GPC tied the game early in the second period, but White and the Golden Bears quickly rebuilt the lead and remained just out of reach the rest of the way.

For the second straight day, GPC shot 37 percent on field goals. Rasco was 6 for 15.

The Jaguars head to Niceville, Fla., next weekend for two games in the Okaloosa- Walton College Thanksgiving Classic. They play OWC on Friday at 7:30 and Chipola College on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. Chipola (4-1) is ranked No. 3 in the National Junior College Athletic Association coaches poll.

Georgia Perimeter’s next home game is Dec. 9 versus Chattanooga State Technical Community College, starting at 8 p.m.

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

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Nov. 21, 2008

Thomas, McNabb lead Jaguars to win

Call Omar Thomas chairman of the boards.

Omar Thomas posted a double-double with 12 points and 15 rebounds.

The 6-7 forward/center for the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team corralled 15 rebounds to lead a dominant performance on the backboards Friday in a 72-65 win over University of South Carolina Salkehatchie College.

Omar Thomas posted a double-double with 12 points and 15 rebounds.

It was the Jaguars’ opening game of their GPC Thanksgiving Classic on the Decatur Campus.

Thomas also scored 12 points, one of five double-figure efforts by GPC. Steve McNabb led the parade with 17, followed by 11 from Jamail Turner and 10 each from Anthony Miller and Michael Tippins. GPC (2-4) overcame 37 percent shooting from the floor. Tippins stood out with 5-for-6 on field goals.

The Jaguars, who had a 56-35 rebounding margin, trailed by as much as 11 points in the first half. The deficit was 37-31 at the break.

Johnson County Community College (Kan.) kicked off the weekend by handling Clinton College (S.C.) 85-76.

The GPC Thanksgiving Classic will be played at the Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur, GA 30034.

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Nov. 17, 2008

James’ hot hand burns Jaguars

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team got Lanced on Monday. Lance James pierced the Jaguars with a 36-point explosion as Aiken Technical College beat GPC 88-78 on the Knights’ home court in South Carolina.

Anthony Miller scored 21 points for the Jaguars.

Anthony Miller scored 21 points for the Jaguars.

James, abetted by teammate Mark Harp (15 points, 15 rebounds), was unstoppable as the Knights dropped GPC to 1-4. They led by nine points at halftime, 46-37.

The visitors generated sufficient offense. Anthony Miller shot 8-for-11 from the floor, including 3-of-4 on threes, and totaled 21 points. Michael Tippins accounted for 13 points, along with 7 rebounds, and Jamail Turner scored 12.

But the Jaguars struggled to contain James, a 5-11 sophomore guard from Lithia Springs, Ga. He was 12-for-20 from the field, hitting both of his threes, and 10-for-13 from the foul line.

The Jaguars next host the GPC Thanksgiving Classic this weekend at the Decatur Campus gym. The Jaguars face off with USC Salkehatchie College at 7 p.m. Friday and Clinton College at 4 p.m. Saturday. Both games are on the back half of a doubleheader.

Friday’s opening game features Clinton and Johnson County Community College at 5 p.m. On Saturday USC Salkehatchie and Johnson County play at 2 p.m.

The GPC Thanksgiving Classic will be played at the Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur, GA 30034.

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Nov. 15, 2008

No. 2 Chipola keeps GPC at bay

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team weathered an initial flurry from Chipola College and made a game of it against the No. 2-ranked team in the National Junior College Athletic Association preseason coaches poll.

But the Jaguars ultimately succumbed 72-62 Saturday on the second day of their Tip-Off Classic on the Decatur Campus.

GPC dropped both games of its annual event, each by 10 points, and fell to 1-3, jeopardizing its No. 9 preseason ranking in the National Junior College Athletics Poll.

The Indians bolted ahead 9-0 and led all the way, but the Jaguars narrowed the gap to 39-33 at halftime, led by Dexter Shaw’s 10 first-half points.

In the second half GPC stayed within 6 for a while, but Chipola pulled safely ahead 63-47 to keep the game out of reach.

"We put forth a good effort against a good team," said GPC head coach Alfred Barney.

"I don’t mind losing as long as the effort is there. The defense looked much better tonight."

Sophomore guard/forward Jamail Turner rebounded from a subpar shooting night Friday to score 15 points on 6-for-13 accuracy for the Jaguars. Shaw finished with 13, while Steve McNabb tallied 11. Omar Thomas reeled in 11 rebounds.

Casey Mitchell led the visitors with 18 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists.

In Saturday’s first game, Okaloosa-Walton College defeated Atlanta Metropolitan College 83-69. Charvez Davis paced the Raiders (5-0) with 17 points, while Jeff Moon poured in 28 to lead Atlanta Metropolitan.

Next up for Georgia Perimeter is a trip to Aiken Technical College (S.C.) Monday and then its back home to host the GPC Thanksgiving Classic on Nov. 21 and 22, featuring Clinton College, Johnson City Community College and USC Salkehatchie College. The Jaguars play USC Salkehatchie on Friday at 7 p.m. and Clinton on Saturday at 4 p.m.

The GPC Thanksgiving Classic will be played at the Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

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Nov. 14, 2008

Jaguars slip in GPC Tip-Off

The GPC Tip-Off Classic this weekend featured two men’s basketball teams ranked in the top 10 of the National Junior College Athletic Association preseason coaches poll. Chipola (Fla.) College, returning a core of its stars from a 35-2 season last year, was ranked No. 2 and Georgia Perimeter College was No. 9.

On Friday, unranked Okaloosa-Walton Community College showed it deserved consideration in the rankings.

The Raiders jumped out to a 39-26 halftime advantage and never looked back in a 78-68 victory. Charvez Davis, a University of Alabama signee, hit 4 of 7 three-point shots and scored 21 points to lead the visitors.

Okaloosa-Walton (4-0) nearly doubled its 13-point lead in the second half before GPC produced a rally to narrow the final margin.

An off-shooting night proved to be the Jaguars’ downfall. They hit only 36 percent from the field, including 29 percent on threes, and managed just 53 percent from the foul line.

Anthony Miller and Jamail Turner had matching 3-for-14 shooting performances. Omar Thomas was more accurate, scoring 11 on just six attempts from the floor to accompany his game-high 14 rebounds. Eric Hairston pitched in with 10 points. In the opening game of the invitational, Chipola College downed Atlanta Metropolitan College 82-71. Gary Flowers and Case Mitchell led Chipola with 15 points each, while David Brown dropped in 19 for the Red-Eyed Panthers.

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

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Nov. 11, 2008

GPC holds on for victory

A big lead gave way to a big scare for the Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team, which gathered itself at Spartanburg (S.C.) Methodist College for a 75-66 win Tuesday night.

The Jaguars (1-1) were ahead most of the game, peaking at 46-31 in the second half. Then the Pioneers rallied with a 19-4 run to a tie it at 50-50, but the Jaguars refused to fall behind.

GPC coach Alfred Barney came away unsatisfied despite the first victory of the season.

“For five or six minutes, we played great defense,” he said. “Overall, we just didn’t play well, especially down the stretch.”

The coach had no complaints with sophomore guard Steve McNabb, whose stellar all-around performance included 23 points, 8 rebounds, 4 steals and 2 assists.

His scoring topped the squad and his rebounds matched the total of teammate Michael Tippins, who stands nine inches taller.

“He played well,” Barney said of McNabb. “Our one bright spot.”

Jamail Turner was the only other Jaguar in double figures with 13 points. Tippins rejected four Pioneer shots.

The Jaguars play host to the GPC Tip-Off Classic Friday night and Saturday afternoon at the Decatur Campus gym. In their home opener, they take on Okaloosa-Walton College on Friday at 7 p.m., following a 5 p.m. game between Atlanta Metro and Chipola College.

GPC meets Chipola College on Saturday at 4 p.m. Atlanta Metro and Okaloosa-Walton will play at 2 p.m.

Chipola is ranked No. 2 in the National Junior College Athletic Association preseason coaches poll, while Georgia Perimeter stands at No. 9.

Chiploa finished eighth in last spring’s national tournament and have won 130 games since head coach Greg Heiar took over the program. Returning stars for the Indians include Casey Mitchell (preseason All-America), Gary Flowers (leading scorer), Torye Pelham (averaged 10 points, 10 rebounds) and seven-footer Jon Kent (also 10 points, 10 rebounds). The GPC Tip-Off Classic will be played at the Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur, GA 30034.

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Nov. 4, 2008

Jaguars lose fast-paced opener

The Georgia Perimeter College men’s basketball team lost a basketball game that resembled a track meet on Tuesday. The Jaguars kicked off their season with a quick-paced 105-80 defeat at Chattanooga State.

GPC raced to a 47-46 halftime lead, only to fade in the second half under a torrent of fast-break baskets.

“We started shooting jump shots and they started shooting layups,” GPC head coach Alfred Barney said.

The most telling difference was three-point shooting: 9-for-19 for the Tigers, 0-for-11 for the Jaguars.

“We didn’t play very well,” Barney added. “I was disappointed with our effort.”

Sophomore transfer Steve McNabb topped GPC with 18 points, while Anthony Miller, a sophomore guard returning from last season’s roster, contributed 14.

The Jaguars could not stop Damian Duncan, who rang up 24 points for the winners. Two others scored 18 each for the Tigers, Russell McNeill and Andrew Woods.

GPC got eight rebounds apiece from Jamail Turner and Stephen Davis. Michael Tippins accumulated five blocks.

The Jaguars try to even their record next Tuesday at Spartanburg (S.C.) Methodist College. For their home opener, they host the GPC Tip-Off Classic on Nov. 14 and 15, playing Okaloosa-Walton College on Friday at 7 p.m. and Chipola College on Saturday at 4 p.m. The Jaguars’ home basketball games are played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, in south DeKalb County.

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Nov. 3, 2008

Building industry is booming for Jaguars

In sports, coaches with heavy roster turnover face what are commonly called rebuilding jobs. Then there is Alfred Barney, whose men’s basketball team at Georgia Perimeter College was demolished almost to its foundation by player departures.

Indeed, building from the ground up is flourishing at GPC’s Decatur Campus gymnasium. Only two players are back from last season’s national tournament qualifier, the fewest that Barney can recall in his 13 seasons at GPC.

Yet the Jaguars command such respect that coaches voted them as the preseason favorite in Region 17, which covers the state of Georgia. Of course, some may have cast their ballots for GPC through force of habit.

In the past seven years, the Jaguars finished atop the standings five times and runners-up the other two. They’ve gone to the National Junior College Athletic Association national tournament three consecutive years.

“We’ve got a chance” to repeat as champions, Barney says. Blessed with 12 scholarship players, he adds, "We’re deeper this year."

As a consequence of unfamiliarity with each other, the incoming Jaguars may need awhile to get in synch. Their pre-league schedule is sprinkled with junior college heavyweights, which could result in early defeats.

“Our schedule is brutal,”" Barney says. “I don’t know what I was thinking. I just like to play tough opponents. I don’t believe in cupcake schedules.

“We could come out of the gate 0-6 if we don’t come to play. We’re also capable of coming out 6-0.”

There is recent precedent not to fret over a possible slow start. Last season, the Jaguars opened 7-9, but Barney shook up the team with a question: “Do you want to win the region or just play?”

The Jaguars proceeded to straighten themselves out with a 15-1 run, winning the region tourney for the fifth time in six years. They advanced to the NJCAA tourney, only to lose there twice, and closed 23-12.

Three standout sophomores earned scholarships to four-year schools, notably Mississippi State signee Jacquise Holcombe, who was the top vote-getter for all-region honors. Nathanial Mitchell landed at Cumberland (Ky.) College and Paul Boea at Clark Atlanta.

Once Barney pruned the roster in the preseason, the only survivors were swingman Jamail Turner of Nunez (Swainsboro H.S.) and guard Anthony “B.J.” Miller of Hinesville (Liberty County H.S.).

Both arrived on campus a year ago as projected backups. Turner gained a starting gig early in the season and Miller later on.

Turner, who averaged 11 points and nearly seven rebounds per game, was lauded with a selection on the All-Region team.

“He played consistent all year long,” Barney says. "He wasn’t worried about scoring. He just played."

Barney will lean on Turner for leadership. “He knows what we expect and what the level of competition is.”

Of Miller, who averaged seven points and two steals: “He did a great job. He fought real hard, especially on the defensive end.”

A few weeks into practice, and with the season opener looming on Nov. 4 at Chattanooga State, the other starting positions were up for grabs. Contenders include 6-foot-10 Ivan Walthour (Midway, Ga., Liberty County H.S.), who was red-shirted last season. Also look for production from four transfers—wing player Dexter Shaw (Cartersville, Ga., Cass H.S.), point guard Steve McNabb (Chicago, Ill., Julian H.S.) and inside players 6-9 Michael Tippins (Valdosta, Ga., Valdosta H.S.) and Omar Thomas (Detroit, Mich., Detroit County Day H.S.).

Barney looks for one ingredient above all others. “If you don’t defend, you’re not going to play,” says the proponent of a pressing, trapping defense that requires fitness and athleticism.

“We’ll still try to play up-tempo,” he says, despite the shortage of experience. “We’ve got some basketball athletes.”

At the same time, Barney evaluates players on attitude.

“It’s about team players,” he says. “You may not have your best players athletically out there on the floor, but it will be a team.”

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

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