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March 23, 2012

Jaguars overcome 23-point deficit, but season ends at nationals

According to sources, never in the history of the National Junior College Athletic Association Division 1 women’s basketball tournament has a team won by coming back from a 23-point deficit. The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars seized history and then let it slip through their fingers.

Kamiya Burwell breaks for two during her 15-point second half. Photos/Jeff Cooper

The Jaguars’ basketball season came to an amazing and agonizing end as they fell short after a monumental comeback, losing to Shelton State Community College 66-60 in the NJCAA national tournament Friday in Salina, Kansas.

[Watch the archive broadcast]

Kamiya Burwell scored 15 points, all in the second half, as the Jaguars overcame a 23-point second-half deficit to take a two-point lead with 2:37 remaining in the game. But they couldn't hold on, and as it was their second loss at the tournament, they were eliminated from the competition. Georgia Perimeter finishes the season with a 23-11 record and the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association and District J championships.

Veda Cook made some key plays during the Jaguars’ comeback.

Fanny Cavallo had a double-double, 10 points and 10 rebounds, in the effort, while Ronita Garrett added 10 points and 7 boards. Burwell, Cavallo and Veda Cook had three steals each, a statistic that contributed greatly to the bizarre second half finish.

Meghan Dunn’s 18 points, including four 3-point goals, paced Shelton State (33-3), which advances to play New Mexico Junior College Saturday for fifth place in the national standings. Sharin Rivers contributed 11 points.

The Buccaneers, who came into the tournament as ninth seed and ranked No. 6 in the NJCAA national poll. GPC was unranked in the poll and seeded No. 12.

Burwell sat out the first half, which ended with Shelton State comfortably ahead 38-24.

“We kind of lost focus in the first half,” said GPC head coach James Waldon. “I don't think the focus was there as it should have been and it showed.”

Ronita Garrett, who had 10 points and seven rebounds, gave the Jags their first lead with a jump shot.

But after Shelton took a 23-point lead, 51-28, with 13:20 left in the game, the Jaguars ripped off a 15-0 run. Sparking the surge was Burwell with seven points.

“She did a great job. I liked the way she picked us up. She put us back in the game,” Waldon said.

Cavallo added four during the run, including a coast-to-coast on a steal—and Ashley Robinson and ShaRon Forte’ also chipped in goals.

For five more minutes, the Jaguars chipped away at the margin—two buckets by Veda Cook (one on a steal), two more by Cavallo, two by Garrett, including a smooth scoop layup.

Consistently driving to the basket and drawing fouls, Burwell dropped in her ninth free throw of nine attempts to make it a one-point ball game, 58-57 with 3:48 on the clock.

Then Garrett sank a turnaround jumper at 3:13 to give the Jaguars their first lead of the game 59-58. Deanna Downer sank a free throw at 2:37 to make it 60-58—a 32-7 run for the Jaguars since the 23-point deficit.

History was in the making.

However, Shelton State unmade it and suddenly regained the momentum, while the Jaguars committed their 25th and 26th turnovers of the game.

Dunn, who had been held to three points in the second half after scoring 11 in the first, sank four free throws in the closing minute and Rivers added two to ice the game.

The teams essentially finished even in most statistics—48-48 in rebounds, 65-65 percent in free throws—but Shelton State dominated in three-point attempts, hitting nine-of-24, compared with GPC’s one-of-seven.

“They had some good shooters,” Waldon said.

The coach praised his team's progress over the season. It resulted in a victory in the first round at nationals for the first time in the school's history, despite the absence of injured starting guard and floor general Chancellar Martin.

“I'm satisfied,” he said. “I remember saying at the beginning of the season this team has the potential to go further than last year. We made tremendous progress. We were good enough to advance from the first round. To win at nationals, things have to go your way. We were close.”

Friday’s scores: Otero 52, Southwestern Illinois 34 (eliminated); Jefferson 67, Snow 59 (eliminated); Shelton State 66, GPC 60 (eliminated); Hutchinson 69, Central Arizona 56; Trinity Valley 71, Pensacola 66.

Saturday’s schedule: Otero vs. Jefferson, 1 p.m. (7th/8th place); New Mexico J.C. vs. Shelton State, 3 p.m. (5th/6th place); Central Arizona vs. Pensacola, 5 p.m. (3rd/4th place); Hutchinson vs. Trinity Valley, 7 p.m. (championship).

For all scores, CLICK HERE. For online video broadcasts of Saturday’s finals, CLICK HERE.

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March 22, 2012

Jaguars denied by No. 4 seed Pensacola

The Cinderella team saw a delightful showing at the big dance suddenly go bad as the clock struck midnight—and that’s almost literally.

As Eastern Daylight Savings Time reached midnight Thursday, Georgia Perimeter College fell to Pensacola (Fla.) State College 70-57 in the quarterfinals of the NJCAA Division 1 women’s basketball national tournament in Salina, Kansas. Because of delays in the day’s earlier games, the start was delayed an hour.

Monique Tillis looks for a teammate during GPC’s 70-57 loss to Pensacola State. Photos/Jeff Cooper

[Watch the archive broadcast]

With the loss the Jaguars (23-9) slip into the losers’ bracket of the double-elimination tourney. They will meet Shelton State Community College (Ala.) Friday at 5 p.m. EDT. The winner of that game plays Saturday for fifth place in the national standings.

Friday’s Shelton State game will be video webcast with a link available at www.gpc.edu/athletic under “Game Webcasts.”

Entering the tournament unranked in the NJCAA national poll, the Jaguars upset 12th ranked Jefferson College Wednesday in the opening round, raising eyebrows in basketball circles. Pensacola, ranked 7th in the nation, was assigned the fourth seed, compared with GPC’s No. 12 seeding.

Head coach James Waldon instructs the Jaguars during a timeout Thursday in the national quarterfinals at Salina, Kansas.

The Pirates (27-4) received a scare in the first half, but foul trouble and turnovers eventually ended Georgia Perimeter’s eight-game winning streak. The officials called 37 fouls on GPC and 21 on Pensacola.

“They got a lot of free throws and got into the bonus early,” said GPC head coach James Waldon. “They made 22 of 37—that makes a huge difference.”

GPC converted 15 of 21 foul shots, 71 percent. Despite playing most of the second half with a turned ankle, Ronita Garrett led the Jaguars with 12 points and seven rebounds. Brittany Logan contributed seven points and nine rebounds, and Monique Tillis had seven points.

Khadijah Ellison led the winners with 15 points, followed by Jasmine Richardson with 13 and Ronika Ransford 11. Pensacola advances to Friday’s semifinals, facing undefeated Trinity Valley Community College, the tourney’s top seed.

Ashley Robinson goes airborne to pass to an open teammate.

Both teams applied pressure defenses in the first half and hammered the offenses into a low-scoring affair. With four minutes gone, Pensacola led 3-0.

Then GPC’s Deanna Downer hit two field goals and Logan sank a 3-pointer for a seven-point run and a 7-3 lead with 12:13 on the clock. Monique Tillis canned a 3-point shot to give GPC its widest margin at 12-6.

There were five lead changes in the half, but the Jaguars claimed a slim 28-27 lead at the buzzer.

The momentum shifted to Pensacola fifteen seconds into the second half when GPC forward Ashley Robinson was called for her fourth foul, a forewarning of things to come. Richardson sank a free throw to tie it and moments later gave the Pirates a 31-28 lead with a 3-point basket.

Although Pensacola never again trailed and appeared to be pulling away at 48-40, the Jaguars persisted. They closed it to 50-47 when Shekinah Alexander grabbed a rebound and spearheaded a fast break that ended with a goal by Garrett.

But Pensacola then produced a 13-point run, inspired by the absence of Jaguar six-footers Robinson and Fanny Cavallo, both of whom fouled out midway through the period. Additionally, Garrett visibly was hampered by her injured ankle, and the team is playing the tournament without another starter, six-foot guard Chancellar Martin, who received a head injury in the March 10 District J championship game.

“Those are big parts of our offense,” Waldon said. “We gave it all we had, used every component we had. We battled to the end, but it wasn’t enough.”

With those planks of GPC’s frontcourt on the bench or limping, the Pirates won the battle of the boards 53-41. It didn’t help that GPC finished the game with 33 turnovers to Pensacola’s 21.

As the Jaguars dined at a restaurant after the midnight hour, Waldon turned his attention to Shelton State (32-3), which finished the regular season ranked No. 6 in the nation and entered the tournament as the ninth seed.

“It should be a good game,” he said. “They have good guards and play hard. But if we don’t turn it over as much as we have been, we’ll be OK.”

Scores of Wednesday’s and Thursday’s second-round games: Southwestern Illinois 62, Northeastern Oklahoma 49 (eliminated); Central Arizona 61, New Mexico J.C. 56; Hutchinson 62, Walters State 46; Otero 48, Meridian 42 (eliminated); Snow 53, Malcolm X 50 (eliminated); Jefferson 69, Monroe 58 (eliminated); New Mexico J.C. 46, Walters State 45 (eliminated); Trinity Valley 66, Shelton State 59; Pensacola 70, Georgia Perimeter 57.

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March 21, 2012

Jaguars advance to national elite eight

In their sixth trip to the women’s basketball national tournament in Kansas, the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars won a first-round game for the first time as they defeated Jefferson College 57-50 Wednesday afternoon.

Brittany Logan scored 14 points and had 14 rebounds for the Jaguars. Photos/Jeff Cooper

[Watch the archive broadcast]

After a sloppy start, the Jaguars (23-9) overcame a 28-23 halftime deficit with a 13-2 run early in the second period that swelled into a 13-point lead that Jefferson couldn’t overcome.

“It feels good to finally win a first-round game,” said GPC head coach James Waldon. “Time to get ready for the next round.”

GPC advances to the quarterfinals of the NJCAA tournament at the Bicentennial Center in Salina, Kan., playing Pensacola State College (Fla.) Thursday at 9 p.m. EDT. Pensacola (27-4) also won its first-round game Wednesday with a 72-60 victory over Monroe Community College (N.Y.).

Fans can watch the Jaguars in the quarterfinal via a live online broadcast at ihigh.com. The link will be available at www.gpc.edu/athletic under “Game Webcasts.”

Jefferson College (28-5) slides into the losers’ bracket of the 16-team double-elimination event, meeting Monroe Thursday afternoon.

Following a well-established precedent this season, the Jaguars extended their winning streak to eight straight games despite a weak offensive effort.

“It was our defense again,” Waldon said. “We struggled offensively, but I think we’ll get the jitters out. We miss Chancellar Martin. We’ve lost our floor general.”

Injured starter Chancellar Martin, sitting next to assistant coach Donald Moore Jr., cheers her teammates.

Martin, a 6-foot sophomore point guard, missed the game with an injury suffered in the first few minutes of the district championship game at Spartanburg Methodist on March 10.

The defense sneaked 19 steals (seven by Kamiya Burwell), forced 34 turnovers and held Jefferson to 29 percent shooting from the field. The Jags allowed only 13 offensive rebounds, beating the Vikings on the glass 50-42.

Four Jaguars scored in double figures, with sophomore center Brittany Logan dumping in 14 points and snaring 14 rebounds. Burwell contributed 13 points, Deanna Downer had 11 and Fanny Cavallo posted 10 points and 10 boards.

GPC committed 18 turnovers in the first half—and matched that in the second—but the Jaguars came out of the locker room after the intermission and quickly turned the game around.

Logan sank two free throws to launch a 21-5 run—including a 10-0 stretch—that established a 46-35 lead. Burwell, who finished with five assists, sparked the run with nine points, a couple of steals and a defensive assist—a poke that led to a steal and layup by Downer.

“We got some big steals that gave us a little separation. That was the difference,” Waldon said.

Cavallo converted a 3-point play to give GPC the game’s biggest point spread, 53-40, with three minutes remaining.

The Jaguars had lost to Jefferson 71-68 on Nov. 25 at the GPC Classic, but the hosts were missing four key players in that game. This time only Martin was missing, though that’s an offensive setback.

The Vikings suffered a similar stroke of bad luck with a six-foot guard. Their top scorer, LaQuinta Jefferson, led everyone with 18 points, but she missed most of the second half with an injury. The Jaguars had held her to 11 points in November.

Scores of Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s first-round games: Central Arizona College 75, Southwestern Illinois College 53; New Mexico J.C. 52, Northeastern Oklahoma A&M 42; Walters State C.C. 61, Otero J.C. 51; Hutchinson C.C. 75, Meridian C.C. 42; Trinity Valley C.C. 88, Malcom X College 51; Shelton State C.C. 85, Snow College 62; Georgia Perimeter 57, Jefferson College 50; Pensacola State 72, Monroe C.C. 60.

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March 19, 2012

Jaguars play Jefferson (Mo.) in national tournament opener Wednesday

The 16 teams in the NJCAA women’s tournament play their first round games Tuesday and Wednesday, and Georgia Perimeter College drew a familiar opponent—Jefferson College of Hillsboro, Mo.

Ronita Garrett, driving in the Jaguars’ November match-up with Jefferson College at the GPC Classic, pulled down 19 rebounds.

Jefferson made the long trip to play the Jaguars in the GPC Thanksgiving Classic at Jaguar Arena on Nov. 25, winning 71-68. The Lady Vikings went on to a record of 28-4 and are currently ranked No. 12 nationally. They are the fifth seed in the national tournament.

The unranked Jaguars (22-9) are seeded 12th.

The teams will play at the Bicentennial Center in Salina, Kan., at 1 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, March 21, the second day of the tournament. The winner will move on to the quarterfinals at 9 p.m. EDT on the 22nd. The loser goes to the consolation bracket to play at least one other game, but can finish no higher than seventh.

That’s where GPC finished last season after losing in the first round to eventual champion North Idaho College and coming back to beat Chattanooga State, Central Arizona and Cloud County of Kansas.

Fanny Cavallo, starting the fast break, had 15 rebounds, five steals and four assists in GPC’s 71-68 loss to Jefferson Nov. 25. Photos/Stephanie Nice

This will be the Jaguars’ sixth trip to the nationals in eight seasons.

After a difficult early schedule and a season of peaks and valleys, the Jaguars have blitzed seven consecutive opponents since a one-point loss at Middle Georgia. The average margin of victory has been 30 points.

GPC, seeded third in the region tournament after losing a coin flip to Darton, beat top-seeded South Georgia Tech 83-47 after the Jets cruised all the way to the tournament final without losing to a region opponent.

The district game at Region 10 champion Spartanburg Methodist was no contest, with the Jaguars winning 75-46.

“Overall I’m impressed with the way we’ve played,” said GPC coach James Waldon. “I tell our players there is no garbage time for me. We try to keep doing the same things all the time.” That includes the trademark pressure defense, scoring in transition and execution of their halfcourt offense.

The Jaguars were a different team—and shorthanded because of injuries—when they played Jefferson in the season’s third game. The loss dropped them to 0-3, but they came back the next night to upset Walters State of Tennessee 47-44.

After GPC led by 50-38 early in the second half, Jefferson wore the Jaguars down with a deeper roster. But Waldon noted at the time that “I saw more good than bad out there.”

Ashley Robinson had 17 points, while Ronita Garrett and Fanny Cavallo had big nights on the boards, with 19 and 15 rebounds, respectively.

Jefferson’s top scorer, LaQuinta “Q” Jefferson, has averaged 18 points but was held to 11 by the Jaguars that night. Jefferson, at 6 feet tall, is the Lady Vikings’ go-to offensive player, effective both inside and outside. She leads the team in 3-pointers.

The Jaguars’ top inside player, 6-foot-4 Brittany Logan, has averages of 13 points and 11 rebounds. An injury limited her playing time against Jefferson.

All games of the national tournament will be video webcast, with links available at www.njcaa.org. Webcasts of Jaguars games will be linked at www.gpc.edu/athletic under “Game Webcasts.” To watch Wednesday’s game, CLICK HERE.

JAGUAR JOLTS: The Jaguars lost to Jefferson, but they own victories over two teams in the NJCAA field, Walters State (No. 10 seed) and Meridian of Mississippi (No. 15). Waldon considers the 102-74 victory at Meridian on Dec. 3 one of the Jaguars’ best performances of the season. … Four Sweet Sixteen teams played in the Jaguars’ Thanksgiving invitational, the GPC Classic—GPC, Jefferson College, Walters State and Meridian—a tribute to the quality of that event. ... Three players on the GPC roster—Logan, Robinson, Shekinnah Alexander and Deanna Downer—have national tournament experience. “That makes a big difference,” said Waldon. … Jefferson has won 14 in row and claimed the Region 16 tournament without point guards Jasmine Crawford and Terriyine Singleton, who were suspended. Both return for the nationals, and both were instrumental in the win over the Jaguars in November, scoring 12 points apiece.

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March 10, 2012

Jaguars win 6th trip to Kansas in 8 years

The next time the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars “create havoc,” in the words of coach James Waldon, it will be in Kansas.

The Jaguars celebrate their 75-46 district win over Spartanburg Methodist that sends them to the NJCAA national tournament. Photo/David Schick

The defense swarmed Spartanburg Methodist College at the Pioneers’ home arena on Saturday as the Jaguars won their sixth trip to the NJCAA tournament in Salina, Kan., in eight seasons with a 75-46 victory.

“We try to create havoc on the floor and let our athleticism work in our favor,” said Waldon. “We try to make the games a little ugly if we can.”

Lately the games have been just beautiful to Jaguar fans. Since a galling one-point loss at Middle Georgia on Feb. 9, GPC has won seven straight by an average margin of 32-plus points, raising its record to 22-9.

The outcome of the District J championship game was never in question after the Jaguars took a 36-17 halftime lead. When they weren’t scoring in transition, they pounded the ball inside against the shorter Pioneers.

“We have some length, and that works to our advantage,” said Waldon, noting the work of 6-foot-4 Brittany Logan and 6-0 Fanny Cavallo.

Cavallo finished with 19 points on 9-for-15 shooting. She also had eight rebounds and four steals. Logan’s 18 points came on an 8-for-17 day that included 10 rebounds.

Kamiya Burwell had 10 points, 6 assists and 5 steals. Ronita Garrett had 10 points to go with 14 rebounds as the Jaguars won the battle of the boards, 48-38. Deanna Downer had eight points and five steals, while Ashley Robinson had eight points and four steals.

Spartanburg Methodist (17-14), the champion of Region 10, was led by Deandra Wright’s 11 points. The Pioneers were held to 33 percent shooting and committed 32 turnovers.

The Pioneers’ season ended in the district game for the second consecutive year. Last year they lost by 51 at Jaguar Arena on the Decatur Campus.

The Jaguars lost their national tournament opener last season to eventual champion North Idaho but came back to win three times in the consolation bracket and finish seventh.

The next order of business is to find out where they will be seeded. Considering their lack of a national ranking, it could be rather low.

That’s no problem for Waldon, who is used to such things. “No matter who we play against, I think we have a good chance,” he said.

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March 8, 2012

After roaring through GCAA tournament, Jaguars seek berth in nationals

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars have picked the right time to peak.

After going through the regular season showing only flashes of their tremendous potential, the Jaguars unleashed a tornado on three opponents in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association tournament, winning by 36, 22 and 36 points.

The victim in the final was South Georgia Tech, to that point undefeated in GCAA play.

”It’s hard to play better than we played,” said GPC coach James Waldon, who often noted how the Jaguars (21-9) lost focus at times during the regular season.

Now they are within a step of a second consecutive trip to the NJCAA tournament in Salina, Kan.

Their final bit of business comes Saturday, a noon game at Spartanburg Methodist for the District J title. Spartanburg Methodist won the Region 10 tournament by beating Denmark Tech 58-56 at home in the final.

Both squads are the definition of ”team.” GPC had only one player selected first or second team all-region – 6-foot-4 center Brittany Logan – although guard Kamiya Burwell presented a strong case.

At Spartanburg Methodist (17-13), nobody made all-region, even though the region consists of five teams. Denmark Tech had the Coach of the Year and the Player of the Year.

”I feel bad for the players that should have gotten the nod, but we’ll take the Region 10 tournament championship and be just fine,” said Spartanburg Methodist’s first-year coach, Briana Clark.

Kierra Phillips leads Spartanburg Methodist, averaging 10 points and 7 rebounds a game. But there’s balance. Kimberly Henderson and Ashia Mitchell average 9 points apiece, Shanolla Council and Deandra Wright 8.

Logan is averaging 13 points and 11 rebounds. Burwell is averaging 11 points, 6 assists and 4 steals. In the region final, she lit up South Georgia Tech for 24 points (half of them on 3-pointers) and 6 assists.

The Pioneers must deal with the Jaguars’ pressing defense as well as a decided height advantage when the teams set up in halfcourt offenses. Council is Spartanburg Methodist’s tallest player at 5 feet 11, shorter than five players on the Jaguars’ roster.

The trees include 6-foot guard Chancellar Martin, who directs the incredibly uptempo offense that gives opponents fits. Wing-forward Ronita Garrett also stretches the tape at 6-0. And when 6-4 Logan is paired with six-footers Ashley Robinson and Fanny Cavallo, the Jaguars present a formidable wall in the frontcourt.

GPC’s bench won’t give any breaks to Spartanburg. Led by sometime-starters ShaRon Forte’, Deanna Downer and Shekinah Alexander, the reserves spark the breakneck attack and don’t miss a beat on defense. The entire roster broke into the scoring column in the region championship game.

Then there’s history to consider. An appearance in the national tournament by a South Carolina team is a rarity. The Jaguars are shooting for their sixth berth in eight seasons and won last season’s district game, also against Spartanburg Methodist, 99-48.

Saturday’s game will be audio webcast, with a link available at www.gpc.edu/athletic under ”Game Webcasts.”

JAGUAR JOLTS: The district game is being held in conjunction with the Region 10 men’s tournament. … GPC lost its opener at the nationals last year to the eventual champion, then won three straight. … This year’s tournament starts March 20 with games starting at 10 a.m. … The 16 teams will be seeded, and the Jaguars’ lack of a national ranking could hurt. They didn’t get a single vote in the last national poll. South Georgia Tech received votes, but not enough to crack the top 20. … The only ranked team the Jaguars beat was Walters State of Tennessee, currently No. 10. At the GPC Classic in November, the Jags handed the Senators one of their two losses on the season. … GPC lost to two top-20 teams, No. 5 Gulf Coast and No. 12 Jefferson College.

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March 2, 2012

Logan named to all-region first team

Brittany Logan, whose work at the post helped lead the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars to the championship of the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association, was named first team all-region by a vote of the coaches.

She was the only Jaguar honored on the first or second teams.

Logan, a 6-foot-4 sophomore from Decatur who graduated from J.L. Mann Academy in Greenville, S.C., averaged 13 points and 11 rebounds as the Jaguars tied for second place in the regular season and won the tournament. They face the Region 10 champion in Spartanburg, S.C., on Saturday at noon for a berth in the national tournament in Salina, Kan.

As a freshman, Logan averaged seven points and nine rebounds as the Jaguars went to the nationals, where they lost the opener and won the next three games.

Joining Logan on the first team were Shontae McCall of South Georgia Tech, Michelle Mitchell of Darton, Brittany Witt of Middle Georgia and Bianca Fennessee of Albany Tech.

The second team was Shanique Holston of South Georgia Tech, Valese McAllister of East Georgia, Jasmine Grier of Central Georgia Tech, Tiayra Green of Chattahoochee Tech and Shakima Wiggins of Albany Tech. Wiggins played briefly at GPC during the 2009-10 season.

Brandan Harrell, who led South Georgia Tech to an undefeated regular season in the region, was named Coach of the Year. McCall was selected as Player of the Year.

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February 25, 2012

Jags hit on all cylinders to win GCAA championship; Burwell named MVP

After an up-and-down season, the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars did what they do best—put on a show at tournament time—and won their sixth conference championship in eight years.

Kamiya Burwell scored 24 points for the Jaguars.

Kamiya Burwell scored 24 points as the Jaguars rolled to an 83-47 victory over South Georgia Technical College Saturday in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association championship game at Armstrong Atlantic University in Savannah.

“It’s hard to play much better than we played,” said head coach James Waldon. “To hold South Georgia Tech to 47 points and win by 36 is a big accomplishment.”

Georgia Perimeter (21-9) will travel on March 10 for the District J championship game with next weekend’s winner of Region 10 of the National Junior College Athletic Association. The winner of the district game goes to the NJCAA national tournament in Salina, Kan.

Burwell made four of five 3-point attempts and was 8-for-9 from the field, plus she added six assists, five rebounds and two steals. Brittany Logan contributed a double-double with 13 points and 18 rebounds, and she had four steals.

Burwell was named tournament MVP, and Logan joined her on the all-tournament team.

Ronita Garrett added 11 points and Chancellar Martin eight. Everyone on the Jaguar roster scored as the team hit 47 percent from the field, 37.7 from the 3-point arc and a phenomenal 83.3 from the foul line.

The Jaguars opened the game red hot and, with the aid of its crushing full-court press, led by as much as 24 points in the first half. They held a 45-22 lead at the intermission. Garrett and Burwell opened the second half with consecutive 3-point buckets, and the team never looked back.

Brittany Logan dominated the paint with a double-double.

Forcing excessive turnovers (26 for the Jets) and rushed shots from the floor (29.2 percent), the Jaguars nearly shut down the offense of South Georgia Tech, which finishes the season with a 24-9 record.

They swiped 17 steals and restricted Shontae McCall, the GCAA Player of the Year, to 11 points. McCall had scored 36 points in Friday’s semifinal win over Middle Georgia College.

“The defense—it’s probably what I’m most proud of,” Waldon said. “We’re really clamping down to make it tough for people to score on us.”

GPC out-muscled the Jets on the boards 64-41. Fanny Cavallo’s 10 rebounds supplemented Logan’s command of the glass.

Samantha Phillips led SGTC with 13 points, and Kayla Ritchie matched McCall with 11.

South Georgia Tech (24-8) had stormed through the conference regular season at 18-0 and defeated GPC twice, 58-49 in Albany and 58-50 on the Jaguars’ home court.

But the Jaguars did the storming in the GCAA tournament, besting their three opponents—Albany Tech, Darton College and the Jets—by at total of 211-122, an average of 28 points per game.

“I knew that they had the potential all along. They just had to tap into it,” Waldon said, referring to his team’s inconsistent performance through much of the season.

Since suffering their ninth loss of the season, 71-70 to Middle Georgia on Feb. 9, the Jaguars have won six straight, all by margins of more than 20 points.

Saturday marked the second consecutive season GPC has beaten South Georgia Tech for the league trophy. Last year the Jaguars downed the Jets in the title game 78-70, went on to win the district championship in a rout and won three of four games at the national tournament, finishing seventh in the 16-team field.

The March 10 District J game will be broadcast online, beginning at 11:50 a.m., with a link at www.gpc.edu/athletic under “Game Webcasts.”

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February 24, 2012

Forte’ and defense send Jaguars to GCAA championship game

They say patience is a virtue, but it may be the forte’ of ShaRon Forte’. The 5-6 freshman guard from McDonough spent most of this season patiently warming the bench, but she has caught fire in the last four games to help Georgia Perimeter College get a shot at its sixth conference championship in eight years.

ShaRon Forte’ led the Jaguars with 15 points, 11 in the first half.

Friday, Forte’ came off the bench to spark the Jaguars to a 56-34 semifinal victory over Darton College, sending GPC to Saturday’s Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association championship game.

Georgia Perimeter (20-9) will meet South Georgia Tech at 1:30 p.m. at Armstrong Atlantic University in Savannah for the conference title and the right to advance to the National Junior College Athletic Association District J championship game March 10.

Forte’ scored 15 points, her fourth consecutive game in double figures, and was pivotal in jump-starting the Jaguars (20-9) after they got off to an extremely sluggish start.

Darton (19-8) grabbed a 6-0 lead, while GPC opened the game ice cold, failing to light the scoreboard until Deanna Downer canned a field goal eight minutes into the game.

Then Forte’ entered the game to pump in nine quick points, sparking a 15-1 run by the Jaguars. She finished the half with 11 points, as GPC took a 27-14 lead into the locker room, aided by consecutive 3-point baskets by Kamiya Burwell and Chancellar Martin.

In the second half, the Jaguars cranked up their patented full-court press to produce a 26-point margin at one point late in the game. The defense held Darton’s all-region guard, Michelle Mitchell, to eight points, nine below her average. GPC made off with 15 steals, and Darton committed 30 turnovers.

Martin finished with 11 points for the Jaguars, while Ashley Robinson had 10 points and grabbed seven rebounds. Ronita Garrett and Darton’s Mitchell and LaKandra Beeks led all rebounders with eight each. Burwell dished off seven assists for GPC.

The affair wasn’t pretty—turnovers simply were out of hand, and Darton shot a miserable 21.7 percent from the field and was 0-for-9 from beyond the 3-point stripe. GPC made 56 percent of its field goal attempts.

The teams had split their home-and-away series and ended the regular season tied for second place with 14-4 records in the GCAA, also known as Region 17 of the NJCAA.

South Georgia Tech was undefeated in the league at 18-0, and the Jets enter Saturday’s title game with a 24-8 overall record. Four of those losses came as forfeits early in November because a paperwork error allowed an ineligible player to participate.

GPC fell to South Georgia Tech twice, 58-49 in Albany and 58-50 at home. This is the second consecutive year the two squads have met in the championship game. Last year the Jaguars won the title game 78-70 after defeating the Jets twice in the regular season and going undefeated in conference play.

That win reinstated the Jaguars as champions after a two-year lapse—they had won the title and gone to the NJCAA national tournament for four consecutive years, from 2005 through 2008.

Saturday’s championship game can be seen on web TV, beginning at 1:25. To watch the action, visit www.gpc.edu/athletic and find the link under “Game Webcasts.”

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February 21, 2012

Jaguars advance to Friday semifinal in Savannah

Brittany Logan scored 21 points to lead Georgia Perimeter College over Albany Technical College 72-46 Tuesday at Decatur Campus in the first round of the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association tournament.

The Jaguars (19-9) punched their ticket to the GCAA semifinals Friday at Armstrong Atlantic State University in Savannah. They will play Darton College, which defeated Central Georgia Tech Tuesday, in Friday’s second semifinal at 7 p.m.

Albany Tech, the tournament’s sixth seed, finishes the season with a 16-14 record.

Logan was a force in the paint, hitting nine of 16 field goal attempts and leading all rebounders with nine boards.

GPC hit 42 percent from the field. Sharon Forte’ scored 11 for the Jaguars, her third consecutive game in double figures.

Fanny Cavallo finished with 10 points, seven assists and four steals, and Chancellar Martin had five steals and four assists. Kamiya Burwell also grabbed four steals.

“I think we’re pretty solid,” said GPC head coach James Waldon. “But we still have some of the same tendencies. When we get up, we tend to let up. We can’t do that this weekend.”

Georgia Perimeter built a 20-6 lead by putting together a 14-1 run in the middle of the first hal and never again trailed. The Jaguars’ superior defense was a major factor, forcing Albany Tech into 29 turnovers, while GPC committed only 15.

GPC contained the Titans’ two all-region players, both to seven points below their average. Shakima Wiggins managed 12 points, while the Jags held Bianca Fennessee to eight points and only a single field goal scored late in the game.

The semifinals and Saturday’s final will be carried on web TV by JockJive, with a link available at www.gpc.edu/athletic under “Game Webcasts.” The first semifinal Friday will be between top seed South Georgia Tech and No. 4 Middle Georgia College. Darton and GPC are the second and third seeds of the tournament, so the finals field is as expected.

“The champion very well could be any of the four finalists,” Waldon said. “It’s usually about two teams, but this year it’s a stronger field.”

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February 20, 2012

Jaguars open tourney with Albany Tech

At tournament time last season, the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars were the hunted.

They’d plowed through the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association undefeated in the regular season. A very good South Georgia Tech team had hopes of derailing GPC in the tournament final, but fell behind early and couldn’t get the job done.

Now the tables are turned.

South Georgia Tech finished 18-0 in the 2012 GCAA regular season, and the Jaguars look for revenge in the tournament final. But that’s a ways down the road.

First the third-seeded Jaguars must deal with No. 6 Albany Tech in Tuesday’s 6 p.m. play-in game at Jaguar Arena on the Decatur Campus.

Friday’s tournament semifinals and Saturday’s final will be at Armstrong Atlantic State University in Savannah. If they beat Albany Tech, the Jaguars will play in the second semifinal at 7 p.m., presumably against Darton College.

GPC split with Darton during the regular season, beating the Lady Cavaliers 57-45 at Jaguar Arena on Jan. 12 and losing 68-64 in Albany nine days later.

The Jaguars, of course, expect to be around for Saturday’s 1:30 p.m. final, with South Georgia Tech on the other bench.

The Jets won the teams’ regular season meetings 58-49 in Americus on Jan. 14 and 58-50 in Decatur on Feb. 4. Those results mean little now.

“I think we’re closer to playing to our potential than we have been at any time during the season,” said GPC coach James Waldon, confident that the Jaguars’ unmatched defense can force enough mistakes to make a second consecutive trip to the national tournament.

The Jaguars had a good final week tuning up for the tournament, beating Chattahoochee Tech by 37 at home and Andrew by 38 on the road. GPC finished the regular season 18-9 overall, 14-4 in the GCAA, also known as Region 17 of the National Junior College Athletic Association.

The 14-4 tied Darton for second place, but because of the concentration of firepower at the top of the league, the GCAA’s tiebreakers couldn’t break the deadlock. So a coin flip for seeding was conducted by conference call, and Darton won.

The Jaguars handled Albany Tech (16-13, 8-10) easily during the regular season, 76-53 in Decatur on Jan. 17 and 69-40 in Albany on Feb. 11.

But the Lady Titans have Bianca Fennessee, a 6-foot-2 triple threat player who scores, is the top rebounder in the league by far, and blocks shots with the best of them. They also have one of the league’s top scorers, Shakima Wiggins, a 3-point artist who played briefly at GPC in the 2009-10 season.

Fennessee had 19 points and 15 rebounds in the January game at GPC. The next time around, the Jaguars held her to five points but couldn’t keep her off the boards, where she got 14 rebounds.

Fennessee usually enjoys a height advantage, but she won’t against GPC’s 6-4 Brittany Logan, also among the GCAA scoring and rebounding leaders. And despite her shooting range, the 5-6 Wiggins is susceptible to being smothered by an assortment of larger Jaguar guards.

Logan leads the Jaguars in scoring with 13 points a game and in rebounding with 11. The No. 2 scorer in Waldon’s team-oriented system is Kamiya Burwell at 11. She’s also an excellent defender with a nose for steals.

A player who has moved up the depth chart at guard is ShaRon Forte, who scored 16 points in each of the final two regular season games. Fanny Cavallo had double-doubles of points and rebounds in those games.

JAGUAR JOLTS: Tuesday’s game will be audio webcast, with a link available at www.gpc.edu/athletic. The tournament semifinals and final will be video webcast by JockJive, with links available at the GPC site. Veteran sportscaster Robert Williamson, mayor of Florala, Alabama, will handle the play-by-play. … The other three play-in matchups are top seed South Georgia Tech vs. No. 8 Chattahoochee Tech, No. 2 Darton vs. No. 7 Central Georgia Tech and No. 4 Middle Georgia vs. No. 5 East Georgia. … Atlanta Metro and Andrew, the 9-10 finishers in the league, didn’t qualify for the tournament. … An 11th team, Georgia Highlands College, comes aboard next season, meaning a region regular season schedule of 20 games.

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February 18, 2012

Jaguars lose coin toss, will face No. 6 seed in tournament play-in game

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars won a game Saturday but lost a coin toss, meaning they will be seeded No. 3 in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association tournament.

They host the No. 6 seed in a play-in game at 6 p.m. Tuesday on the Decatur Campus. The game will be audio webcast, with a link available at www.gpc.edu/athletic under “Game Webcasts.”

The identity of the No. 6 seed won’t be known until all region games are completed.

The Jaguars wrapped up a 14-4 regular season in the region (18-9 overall) with a 95-57 victory over Andrew in Cuthbert. That left GPC tied with Darton College for second place, but the teams split their two games and further region tiebreakers failed to resolve the deadlock.

That led to the coin toss, which was made in a conference call.

South Georgia Tech completed the first perfect regular season in school history Saturday by beating Middle Georgia. The loss dropped Middle to the No. 4 seed.

The top four teams host play-in games, with the winners advancing to the semifinals and final next Friday and Saturday at Armstrong Atlantic State University in Savannah. The semifinals will be at 5 and 7:30 p.m., with Saturday’s final at 1:30 p.m. All three games will be video webcast with links at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

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

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February 14, 2012

Robinson, Cavallo, Forte pace Jags in 87-50 win

Ashley Robinson and Fanny Cavallo each turned in double-doubles and ShaRon Forte had her best night of the season as Georgia Perimeter College defeated Chattahoochee Technical College 87-50 Tuesday at the Decatur Campus.

The victory kept the Jaguars (17-9, 13-4) in line to finish second in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association. Darton is 12-4 with two games remaining, with Middle Georgia at 13-4 facing a game against South Georgia Tech, which is undefeated in the region and has clinched first place.

The region’s top four teams get to host first round games tournament games Feb. 21. The semifinals and final will be at Armstrong Atlantic State University in Savannah on Feb. 24-25.

Next Tuesday the Jaguars will host a GCAA play-in game, with the opponent depending on the final standings. The play-in game will be audio broadcast online with a link at gpc.edu/athletic.

Robinson scored 18 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, and Cavallo had 14 points and 15 boards. Forte hit six of 12 from the field, including two of three 3-point shots, to rack up 16 points.

“She’s very level headed and plays within herself. That’s why I moved her up in the rotation,” said GPC coach James Waldon of Forte. Kamiya Burwell dished out nine assists for the Jaguars.

Chattahoochee Tech was led by Tiayra Green with 18 points, and Tequilla Vaughns added a double-double, 13 points and 12 rebounds. The Jaguars wrapped up the game in the first half, taking a 52-23 lead.

“In the first half we did a good job running the offense,” said James Waldon. “In the second half we got a little passive.”

Saturday GPC travels to Andrew College in Cuthbert to close out the regular season. Tuesday was Sophomore Night, with the Jaguars honoring eight players leaving the program after the season. They are Robinson, Burwell, Cavallo, Brittany Logan, Monique Tillis, Deanna Downer, Shekinah Alexander and Chancellar Martin.

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February 11, 2012

Jaguars bounce back on the road

Just two days after a tough loss at Middle Georgia, the Jaguars made another bus trip and hauled back a better result.

Brittany Logan scored 14 points Saturday to lead the Georgia Perimeter College women’s basketball team to a 69-40 victory at Albany Tech.

The Jaguars (16-8, 12-4) conclude their home season Tuesday with a 5:30 p.m. game against Chattahoochee Tech. The game will be audio webcast, with a link available under “Game Webcasts” at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

Ashley Robinson (14) and Kamiya Burwell (11) also scored in double figures for the Jaguars, who are fighting with Darton College for second place in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association. GPC is assured of hosting a tournament play-in game on Feb. 21 as one of the top four seeds in the region.

Fanny Cavallo also had a big night statistically, with 14 rebounds, nine points, six steals, five assists and three blocked shots. Ronita Garrett had seven steals as the Jaguars forced the Lady Titans into 36 turnovers.

GPC won the battle of the boards, 48-38. Robinson contributed 10 rebounds and Logan 9.

Former Jaguar Shakima Wiggins led Albany Tech (15-12, 7-9) with 17 points, all but two on 3-pointers. The Jaguars held Biance Fennessee to 5 points, a third of her average, but she did grab 14 rebounds.

Georgia Perimeter led 32-19 at halftime.

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

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February 9, 2012

Middle Georgia gains revenge on Jaguars

In Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association women’s basketball nothing is certain this year.

Thursday, the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars fell at Middle Georgia College 71-70 after thumping the Warriors 84-48 on Jan. 19.

The loss drops the Jaguars (15-8, 11-4) into a tie with Middle for third place in the loss column in the highly competitive GCAA, also known as Region 17 of the National Junior College Athletic Association. Darton College takes sole possession of second place.

Middle Georgia (17-4, 11-4) overcame a 12-point Jaguar lead in the second half with a hot hand from the floor and a stifling defense.

“They played with a lot of heart and determination,” said GPC head coach James Waldon.

The Warriors’ freshman guard Brittany Witt, did the most damage to the Jaguars, pouring in 28 points to demonstrate why she is the second-leading scorer in the conference with a 20-point average. She and Jazzmin Grove also turned in an exceptional defensive performance in the backcourt that disrupted GPC’s offense throughout the night.

Middle Georgia had two others in double digits, Shaketa Hodges and Jacquie Williams with 10 apiece.

The Warriors made 25 of 53 shots from the floor, while the Jaguars hit only 26 of 63.

Georgia Perimeter had four players in double figures. Fanny Cavallo led with 16, followed by Kamiya Burwell with 14, Brittany Logan 11 and Deanna Downer 10.

Burwell had five assists and Logan led on the boards with eight rebounds.

There were 14 lead changes in the game. GPC led 58-38 midway through the second half, and then the Warriors went on a 13-0 run capped by a 3-pointer by Witt to grab the lead 51-50.

“I think it was the same nemesis that has plagued us all year,” Waldon said. “When we get ahead, we make foolish mistakes and bad decisions. That’s something we seem to be afflicted with—we can’t stay in a groove.”

In the final eight minutes, the lead exchanged hands six times until Witt sank two field goals to put the Warriors up for good 66-64.

Saturday GPC travels to Albany Technical College for another league match-up. They return to the home court Tuesday to host Central Georgia Tech. That game will be broadcast online with a link at www.gpc.edu/athletic, beginning at 5:20 p.m.

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February 7, 2012

Jaguars shoot 52% in 93-52 victory over Atlanta Metro

The Georgia Perimeter College bounced back from a deflating loss Tuesday night with a 93-52 victory over Atlanta Metropolitan College at Jaguar Arena on the Decatur Campus.

Brittany Logan scored 16 points to lead five Jaguars in double figures. Monique Tillis and Kamiya Burwell had 13 apiece, Fanny Cavallo 12 and Chancellar Martin 11. Ronita Garrett and ShaRon Forte had nine each. The Jaguars shot 52 percent from the field.

“We did a lot of good things. We executed the offense well and were tough on defense,” said GPC coach James Waldon.

At 11-3 in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association, the Jaguars (15-8 overall) remain tied in the loss column with Darton College for second place. They play another important game Thursday night against fourth-place Middle Georgia in Cochran.

The region’s top four teams get to host first round games tournament games Feb. 21. The semifinals and final will be at Armstrong Atlantic State University in Savannah on Feb. 24-25.

The goal for the Jaguars, of course, is to get back to the level of play they showed at one point in the season, a level they came nowhere close to reaching in Saturday’s home loss to first place South Georgia Tech.

“Hopefully this is a step toward that,” said Waldon.

The Jaguars led 23-1 a little more than six minutes into the game and 50-26 at halftime. Had Metro not gotten nine 3-pointers, five by Danielle Jackson, the final margin would have been much greater.

Jackson finished with 19 points, while Alexandria Tucker had 15 for the Red-Eyed Panthers (5-19, 1-12), who committed 31 turnovers and were held to 36 percent shooting.

Logan and Garrett had nine rebounds apiece as the Jaguars won the battle of the boards, 42-30.

Burwell had six assists and seven steals. Martin contributed five steals, Cavallo and Shekina Alexander four apiece. The game Thursday at Middle Georgia College will be audio broadcast online with a link at gpc.edu/athletic.

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February 4, 2012

South Georgia Tech rallies to down Jaguars

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars saw their hopes of finishing atop the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association standings all but vanish Saturday afternoon when they lost to South Georgia Tech 58-50 at the Decatur Campus.

Despite Brittany Logan’s double-double, 11 points and 13 rebounds, the Jaguars fell to SGTC. Photo/Andrew McMurtrie

The Jaguars fell to 14-8 overall, 10-3 in the region, while South Georgia Tech improved to 17-8 and 13-0.

Brittany Logan led GPC with 11 points and 13 rebounds. Kamiya Burwell and Ashley Robinson had 10 points apiece and Burwell added seven steals.

Ronita Garrett and Fanny Cavallo grabbed nine rebounds apiece as the Jaguars won the battle of the boards 54-48 but couldn’t put the ball in the basket, shooting 28 percent from the field.

The Jaguars were also cold from the free throw line, 11 for 26.

Shontae McCall paced the Jets with 15 points, followed by Manon Cherubini and Shanique Holston with 11 each. Samantha Phillips got a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds.

The Jaguars led 27-26 at halftime and 38-34 with 11:18 remaining. But South Georgia Tech put the game away with a 21-4 run over the next nine minutes.

GPC plays Atlanta Metropolitan College at home on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. The game will be audio webcast with a link at gpc.edu/athletic.

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

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1/31/2012

Logan’s monster double-double leads Jaguars past Central Ga. Tech

The tallest player on Georgia Perimeter College’s roster came through with her biggest night of the season.

Brittany Logan, who stands 6 feet 4, scored 20 points Tuesday night and added 25 rebounds as the Jaguars (14-7, 10-2) beat Central Georgia Tech 91-55 in Macon.

The victory gives the Jaguars momentum heading into their Saturday afternoon rematch with South Georgia Tech, which remains undefeated in region play. GPC lost the first game 58-49 in Americus.

Saturday’s game will be webcast. Go to www.gpc.edu/athletic and look for “Game Webcasts” for a link.

Coming off a two-point game against Andrew, Logan was 8-for-12 from the field, some of the points coming from her 10 offensive rebounds as the Jaguars won the battle of the boards, 56-35.

Five more Jaguars scored in double figures — Fanny Cavallo (13), Deanna Downer (12), Monique Tillis (12), Kamiya Burwell (11) and Ashley Robinson (11).

Cavallo also contributed 11 rebounds, while Burwell had four steals.

Shanice Stanley had 12 points for Central Georgia Tech (11-10, 6-7), which trailed 50-34 at halftime.

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January 26, 2012

Cavallo, Burwell star as Jaguars beat Andrew 87-56

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars rode huge games from Fanny Cavallo and Kamiya Burwell on Thursday night to an 87-56 victory over Andrew College at Jaguar Arena on the Decatur Campus.

Cavallo had 21 points, including a few off the offensive glass as she grabbed 16 rebounds. She also had five steals.

“It seemed like on every rebound she was pushing the ball (upcourt),” said GPC coach James Waldon. “It was beautiful to watch.”

Burwell got her 24 points and six steals in just 20 minutes, sitting much of the second half.

“Because we had a comfortable lead we were able to retire her early,” said Waldon. “She was really getting on a roll there. But she’s unselfish. She was willing to sit down to let other people play.”

The Jaguars (13-7, 9-2) had two other double-figure scorers — Ronita Garrett (12) and Ashley Robinson (10). Garrett also contributed six rebounds as the Jaguars won the battle of the boards 53-41.

GPC took a 41-22 halftime lead. After a few shaky moments early in the second half — the “lack of focus” Waldon keeps talking about — the Jaguars’ defense dispatched Andrew, which committed 29 turnovers.

Whitney Edwards led Andrew (10-11, 0-9) with 16 points. Jebreal Alford, a first team all-region pick a season ago, had 14 points and 10 rebounds.

The Jaguars have a rare weekend off before traveling to Central Georgia Tech next Tuesday. After that, it’s the rematch with South Georgia Tech, which remains undefeated in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association (also known as Region 17 of the National Junior College Athletic Association).

The South Georgia Tech game will be at 2 p.m. on Feb. 4 at Jaguar Arena, preceding the men’s game between the same schools.

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January 21, 2012

Darton upends Jaguars 68-64

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars tripped in Albany Saturday, losing a key Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association matchup with Darton College 68-64.

Georgia Perimeter had beaten Darton 57-45 only 10 days earlier, but Saturday the Jaguars missed too many easy shots and committed 26 turnovers. Meanwhile, the Cavaliers were sufficiently accurate from the field, shooting 43 percent—and they were hot from beyond the 3-point line with 33 percent.

“They shot pretty well today,” said GPC head coach James Waldon. “They didn’t miss a lot.”

The defeat drops the Jaguars to 12-7 and 8-2 in the GCAA. It also makes GPC’s Feb. 4 home date with South Georgia Tech even more critical.

Tech is undefeated atop the GCAA, and another Jaguar loss to the Jets would jeopardize Georgia Perimeter’s chances of finishing in second place, a valued seed in the conference tournament. Middle Georgia and Darton also are contending for that spot.

Kamiya Burwell led the Jags with 18 points, followed by Brittany Logan with 14 points and 13 rebounds. Ronita Garrett had 12 points and nine rebounds, and Ashley Robinson contributed 12 points.

Darton (10-6, 6-3) also had four in double figures—Christina Brown with 20 points, Michelle Mitchell 18, LaKandra Beeks 13 and Lauren Johnson 11. The Cavs outrebounded the Jags 43-39.

Georgia Perimeter tied the score with seven minutes remaining in the game, and it was nip-and-tuck to the finish. But sloppiness doomed the visitors.

“A couple of crucial turnovers broke our back,” Waldon said.

Thursday Andrew College visits GPC in another league contest at 5:30 p.m. The game will be audio broadcast online, beginning with the pregame Jaguar Journal at 5:20. Visit www.gpc.edu/athletic for the link under “Game Webcasts.”

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January 19, 2012

GPC delivers another big finish to win 84-48

Losing leads and then blowing the game wide open is becoming a habit.

Kamiya Burwell, taking a jump shot, led the Jaguars with 21 points, four assists and three steals. Photos/Andrew McMurtrie

For the second night, the Georgia Perimeter College women’s basketball team let a commanding margin dwindle in the second half but poured it on down the stretch to win. A 29-8 run saved them this time, while Tuesday a 25-4 surge put away Albany Technical College 76-53.

Kamiya Burwell scored 21 points to lead the Jaguars to an 84-48 victory over Middle Georgia College in a key Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association game Thursday at GPC’s Decatur Campus.

Georgia Perimeter, in second place in the GCAA, moves to 12-6, 8-1, while third-place Middle Georgia drops to 11-3, 5-3. They trail South Georgia Tech, which remains undefeated in the conference.

After leading 35-14 at halftime, GPC came out cold and allowed the Warriors to rally, closing it to 48-35.

Then the Jaguars went on the 29-8 run in less than five minutes, led by Fanny Cavallo with 12 points. With 3:30 remaining they held a 78-44 lead and rolled to the finish.

Cavallo posted 18 points, 13 rebounds and 5 steals for the Jaguars. Brittany Logan also had a double-double with 10 points and 12 rebounds. GPC shot 45.9 percent from the field.

Fanny Cavallo posted 18 points, 13 rebounds and five steals.

Additonally, Burwell registered four assists and three steals, and Veda Cook and Ronita Garrett sparked the team at various intervals with nine points and nine rebounds, respectively.

The Jaguar defense held Middle’s Brittany Witt to 13 points—she’s the league’s second highest scorer with nearly 19 points per game and ranked in the top 20 of the National Junior College Athletic Association. Jacquie Williams contributed 11 points and 10 rebounds for the visitors.

Troubling statistics were the 49 fouls called in the game and an incredible 70 turnovers, making the performance much too ragged for both coaches, GPC’s James Waldon and Middle’s Anderson Ligon.

Saturday GPC travels to Darton College in Albany in the teams’ second matchup of the season. The Jaguars beat Darton a week ago 57-45.

GPC returns to the home hardwood next Thursday at 5:30 against Andrew College. That game will be broadcast online at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

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

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January 17, 2012

Jaguars’ second-half run drops Albany Tech

A 25-4 run in the second half powered Georgia Perimeter College to a 76-53 victory over Albany Technical College Tuesday at GPC’s Decatur Campus.

Ronita Garrett scores two of her team-high 20 points. Photo/Andrew McMurtrie

After leading the whole way outside an 8-8 tie, the Jaguars let a double-digit lead slip to a two-point margin, 47-45, midway through the second half. Head coach James Waldon called a timeout.

“I told them they’ve got to learn to get tough,” Waldon said. “They’ve got to grow up and learn to lay it on the line. I also put three bigs on the floor—we’d been playing with three guards for some time.”

His pep talk and lineup adjustment worked—the Jaguars exploded for 25 points while holding the Titans to four.

“That’s the focus—to develop that toughness. I think we’re headed in the right direction,” Waldon said.

Ronita Garrett scored 20 points and Ashley Robinson and Kamiya Burwell added 15 and 12, respectively, as Georgia Perimeter improved to 11-6, 7-1 in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association. The Jaguars hold second place in the conference, behind South Georgia Tech.

Bianca Fennessee led Albany Tech (11-7, 3-4) with 19 points. But the sticky Jaguar defense held the league’s top scorer, Shakima Williams to nine points, far below her 20.8 average.

Albany Tech won the battle of the boards 46-43. Garrett also led her team in rebounds with eight, and Fennessee led the Titans with 15.

Kamiya Burwell handed out six assists for the Jaguars, as did the Titans’ Lashay Lettingham.

Thursday third-place Middle Georgia College visits GPC for another key GCAA game, beginning at 5:30. The game will be broadcast online at 5:20 with a link at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

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January 14, 2012

Jaguars stumble in Americus, lose share of first place

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars lost their first conference game of the season with a 58-49 loss to South Georgia Technical College Saturday in Americus.

The loss ended a 22-game regular season winning season for the Jaguars, 10-6 overall and 6-1 in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association. South Georgia Tech (11-8, 7-0) takes sole possession of first place in the GCAA, also known as Region 17 of the National Junior College Athletic Association.

Ronita Garrett and Brittany Logan led Georgia Perimeter with 12 points apiece. Kamiya Burwell posted 10 points and five steals.

Although GPC outrebounded Tech 42-39, the Jaguars couldn’t overcome a core of talented Jets led by Shontae McCall. She turned in a game-high 17 points and 12 rebounds.

Three teammates also reached double figures as the Jets cracked the visitors’ vaunted defense. Samantha Phillips and Inna Leja each added 12 points, and Shanique Holston had 10.

South Georgia Tech led all the way, taking a 31-23 halftime lead. The Jets extended their lead to 14 on a 3-pointer by Manon Cherubini and two free throws by McCall with 13:47 left. The Jaguars then went on a 12-2 run, with six of the points by Garrett, cutting the deficit to four.

The Jets responded by scoring 12 of the next 14 points, wrapping up the game.

Albany Technical College visits GPC Tuesday for another GCAA contest, beginning at 7:30. The online broadcast begins and 7:25 with a link under “Game Webcasts” at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

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

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January 12, 2012

Burwell scores 18 to lead Jags past Darton

Kamiya Burwell produced 18 points, 7 steals, 5 rebounds and 4 assists to lead Georgia Perimeter College to a 57-45 conference victory over Darton College Thursday at the Decatur Campus.

The victory—their sixth straight—improves the Jaguars to 6-0 in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Conference and 10-5 overall. It sets the stage for a showdown Saturday at South Georgia Technical College in Americus. The Jets also are undefeated in the league at 6-0.

After several lead changes in the first half, Georgia Perimeter’s trademark smothering defense began to wear on Darton, and the Jaguars took a 25-18 lead into the locker room at halftime.

GPC went on a 16-4 run early in the second period, taking a 47-28 lead that the Cavaliers couldn’t overcome.

Brittany Logan added 10 points, and Fanny Cavallo pulled down 9 rebounds for the Jaguars.

LaKandra Beeks led Darton (9-6, 4-3) with 9 points, while GPC’s defense held the Cavaliers’ leading scorer, Michelle Mitchell to 4 points, well below her 17 point average.“Defensively, I thought we were pretty tough. Offensively, we’re still not where I’d like us to be,” said Jaguar head coach James Waldon. “I guess that’s the nature of coaching.”

Darton, playing this year under new head coach Lea Henry, never gave up and made a late comeback to shorten the final margin.

“We have the ability to score more consistently,” Waldon said. “We just don’t put them away. That’s one thing about this sport—it’s hard for a team to maintain focus for long periods of time.”

Saturday’s game at South Georgia Tech will be audio broadcast online, starting at 12:50 p.m. To listen, visit www.gpc.edu/athletic and click on the link under “Game Webcasts.”

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January 10, 2012

Defense gives Jaguars fifth straight win

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars depend on their consistently excellent defense to bail them out when they’re having a tough night on the offensive end.

That was the case Tuesday night in Atlanta Metro’s gym, a road trip short in distance but long in perilous possibilities. With 17 minutes remaining in the game, the Jaguars led by two. At the final buzzer, they’d won 74-46.

“I don’t know what that was about,” said coach James Waldon of a first half in which the Jaguars had trouble making anything longer than a layup. They missed plenty of those.

In the half, the Jaguars’ defense forced 21 turnovers, providing enough transition points to keep them ahead 26-24.

After trading baskets early in the second half, they held the Red-Eyed Panthers to six points in the next 12 minutes, turning a close game into a blowout.

“The defense was good all night. We just needed the offense to get going,” said Waldon.

Ronita Garrett led the way with 19 points and 11 rebounds. Brittany Logan and Fanny Cavallo added 12 points each, while Kamiya Burwell had 11.

Despite their slow start (Metro led 17-8 at one point) and going 0-for-10 outside the 3-point arc, the Jaguars shot a respectable 41 percent from the field. They missed more than half their free throws.

Ashley Robinson, the second-leading scorer on the team behind Logan, sat out with nagging injuries. Obviously, she was missed, but the Jaguars managed to stay unbeaten in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association at 5-0. They are 9-5 overall and have a five-game winning streak.

While the Jaguars failed to connect on a single trey, Metro’s Jessica Anderson made eight. Early in the game, she was a one-woman offense, making five 3-pointers. But her 28 points weren’t nearly enough as the Panthers fell to 0-4 in the region, 3-12 overall.

The Jaguars play Darton on Thursday at 5:30 p.m. at Jaguar Arena on the Decatur Campus. For a link to the audio webcast, go to www.gpc.edu/athletic.

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

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January 7, 2012

Jaguars’ defense key to victory over East Georgia

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars jumped on East Georgia early Saturday, forcing 20 turnovers by halftime of what turned into a 74-35 victory at Jaguar Arena on the Decatur Campus.

The scoring was balanced, as is the Jaguars’ habit. Brittany Logan led with 12 points and eight rebounds, while Ronita Garrett had 11 points and nine rebounds. Deanna Downer contributed 10 points, Ashley Robinson nine, and Kamiya Burwell and Monique Tillis eight each.

Scoring the game’s first 13 points, the Jaguars rode their full-court-pressing defense to a 42-21 halftime lead and cruised to victory despite some lackluster moments in the second half.

“The first half was pretty flawless. We were solid offensively and defensively,” said coach James Waldon.

In the second half, the Jaguars “had trouble keeping their focus being up by that big margin, for whatever reason,” said Waldon. “The concentration and execution weren’t there.”

The Jaguars moved to 8-5 overall, 4-0 in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association, also known as Region 17 of the National Junior College Athletic Association.

They now take a four-game winning streak into a busy week—at Atlanta Metro on Tuesday, home against Darton on Thursday and then at Americus on Saturday for a key matchup against South Georgia Tech, also unbeaten in the region.

Albrey Tyson had 10 points and 10 rebounds for East Georgia (8-8, 0-5). The Bobcats are in the midst of playing eight games in 11 days, five on the road. GPC held East Georgia’s top scorer, Valese McCallister, to three points. For the game, the Jaguars forced 33 turnovers.

With an air time of 5:20 p.m., Tuesday’s game will be audio broadcast online. To listen, visit www.gpc.edu/athletic and click on the link under “Game Webcasts.”

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January 5, 2012

Five Jaguars hit double figures in win

Coming off the holiday break, Georgia Perimeter College downed Chattahoochee Technical College 90-64 in a women’s basketball conference game Thursday at the Smyrna Community Center.

Sophomore post Brittany Logan scored 20 points and four other Jaguars scored in double figures as GPC earned its third straight win, improving to 7-5 overall and 3-0 in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association. Ronita Garrett tallied 18 points, followed by Ashley Robinson with 15, all in the second half. Defensive standouts Shekinah Alexander and Deanna Downer had 11 and 10, respectively.

“I liked our rhythm and tempo, the way we got it up and down,” said head coach James Waldon. “If we find a way to sustain that, we’re going to be tough to handle.”

GPC’s pressing defense forced turnovers throughout the game and proved too much for the Golden Eagles (8-6, 0-4). Though pleased, Waldon wasn’t entirely pleased.

“At times we played good defense and sometimes we let down,” he said. “When we have a comfortable margin, we sometimes take it easy.”

Downer and Alexander teamed up to hold Chatt Tech’s high scorer, Tiayra Green (19 points per game) to 5 points in the first half. But Green found ways to score in the second half and finished with a game-high 21 points. Tasia Holdorf added 14 and Tequilla Vaughns 11 for the Eagles.

Garrett scored the game’s first seven points and the Jags took a 15-4 lead. But Chatt Tech drew within four, 18-14 midway through the first half.

Then Downer scored, Kamiya Burwell hit a 3-pointer and assisted Fanny Cavallo and the Jaguars went on an 18-3 run, never again to be threatened. They held a 45-28 halftime lead and eventually stretched it to a 34-point margin.

Saturday the Jaguars host East Georgia College, which GPC defeated in November in the Jaguars’ conference opener. The game will be audio webcast at 1:50 p.m. with a link at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

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

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December 29, 2011

Down 14, Jags rally to win 86-63 in Memphis

With its full roster suited up this week for the first time since the opener, the Georgia Perimeter College women’s basketball team completed a successful trip Thursday to the Saluqi Classic in Memphis with an 86-63 win over Lewis and Clark Community College.

Martin

Burwell

One day after a similarly dominant win over Mineral Area, the Jaguars moved north of .500 with a 6-5 record.

Injuries had cut all season into GPC’s depth. The Jaguars took advantage of their reinforcements with an effective full-court press that induced 43 turnovers from the Trailblazers (4-7) of Godfrey, Ill.

It took awhile for the Jaguars to exercise control. They trailed 17-3, then rallied to a 32-32 tie and moved ahead by as much as 16 points in the second half.

GPC’s two press alignments “caused them a lot of problems,” said Coach James Waldon, who found the 2-1-2 more effective. “We kind of wore them down a little bit.”

Three Jaguar scorers attained double-figures—Brittany Logan (19), Ronita Garrett (18) and Ashley Robinson (14). Garrett carried GPC offensively in the first half, accounting for half of its points.

Impressive statistics belonged to guards Kamiya Burwell (seven assists, six steals) and Chancellar Martin (eight steals, six assists).

“This tournament helped us,” said Waldon, alluding specifically to the comeback from an early deficit.

The Jaguars begin the new year and resume conference play with a Jan. 5 game at Chattahoochee Tech in Marietta, a new member of the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association. GPC is 2-0 in the GCAA, while Chatt Tech is 1-3 and 8-5 overall. The game will be audio webcast, starting at 5:20 p.m., with a link at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

On Saturday, Jan. 7, the East Georgia College Bobcats (8-4, 0-3) visit GPC, a team the Jaguars beat in November in their league opener. That game also will be broadcast online at 1:50 p.m.

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

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December 28, 2011

Jaguars win opener of Saluqi Classic in Memphis

After playing well in fits and starts and dealing with injuries, the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars finally hit on all cylinders Wednesday night, beating Mineral Area College of Missouri 82-45 at the Saluqi Classic in Memphis.

“This is the first game we’ve had everybody back,” said Jaguars coach James Waldon. “It was pretty much our tempo. We were picking up on defense and made it tough for them.”

Garrett

Logan

Robinson

The Jaguars (5-5) got double-doubles from Ashley Robinson (16 points, 11 rebounds), Brittany Logan (14/11) and Ronita Garrett (10/10). It was the second time the trio posted double-doubles in the same game—they did it on Dec. 3 in a 102-74 win at Meridian (Miss.) Community College.

Fanny Cavallo also had 10 rebounds as the Jaguars won the battle of the boards 54-32.

Veda Cook contributed a strong game at guard, finishing with nine points and six steals and impressing the coaches with drives to the hoop.

The Jaguars forced 20 turnovers in the first half, forging a 39-17 lead. Mineral Area finished with 29 percent shooting to the Jaguars’ 43 percent. Overall, GPC forced 28 turnovers that produced 38 points.

“We had everything going defensively and offensively,” said Waldon.

Taylor Ignoto led Mineral Area (9-7) with 16 points, while Brittany Lawson had 12.

The Cardinals will play host team Southwest Tennessee Community College at 7 o’clock EST Thursday in the Saluqi Classic finale after the Jaguars meet Lewis and Clark Community College of Godfrey, Ill., at 5 p.m.

Thursday’s game will be the last outside the region for the Jaguars, who have regained the services of Chancellar Martin, Deanna Downer and Kamiya Burwell, who missed various periods with injuries.

They expect to be at full strength again Jan. 5 for the first game of the new year against Chattahoochee Tech at the Smyrna Civic Center. Game time is 5:30 p.m., and a link to the audio webcast can be found at www.gpc.edu/athletic under “Game Webcasts.”

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December 19, 2011

Logan shines with 22 rebounds, 20 points, but Jaguars stumble at Roane State

The Georgia Perimeter College women’s basketball team, rusty from nine days between games, dropped under the .500 mark Monday with a 63-55 setback to Roane State Community College in Harriman, Tenn.

Brittany Logan

Sophomore center Brittany Logan pumped in 20 points and snared 22 rebounds, but got little support from teammates. The Jaguars dipped to 4-5 despite the return of two starters back from injury layoffs.

Guard Deanna Downer scored 8 and forward Chancellar Martin 5, as both returned after prolonged injury recoveries. No GPC player joined Logan in double figures.

“We couldn’t get anybody else to really help her,” head coach James Waldon said.

GPC traded leads with the Raiders (7-7) in a tightly contested first half. The game remained close for awhile after intermission until Roane State pulled ahead by forcing multiple turnovers.

Raiders point guard Takyah Gilmore did considerable damage with 25 points.

“We played horribly,” said Waldon, indicating he might tinker with the lineup. “Our chemistry is just out of whack for some reason. We do good things. Then, when we really need a stop, we leave someone wide open.”

The Jaguars must wait another nine days until their next game, Dec. 28 against Mineral Area (Mo.) College at the Saluqi Classic at Southwest Tennessee Comunity College in Memphis. The following day they will face Lewis and Clark Community College at the holiday invitational.

The idle stretch is a concern to Waldon, who would prefer shorter gaps between dates to help the team’s flow on the court. “It’s pretty tough right now,” he said.

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December 13, 2011

Game at Wallace State cancelled

Wallace State Community College cancelled the Saturday, Dec. 17, women’s basketball game with Georgia Perimeter College in Hanceville, Ala., because of a scheduling conflict.

The next game for the Jaguars is a visit Monday to Roane State Community College in Harriman, Tenn., followed by a trip to Memphis for a holiday tournament Dec. 28 and 29.

The Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association schedule resumes on Jan. 5 at Chattahoochee Technical College in Marietta. GPC’s next home game will be Jan. 7 against East Georgia College. That game will be audio webcast with a link at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

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December 10, 2011

Jaguars fall to No. 7-ranked Gulf Coast State

The Georgia Perimeter Jaguars’ highly anticipated rematch with No. 7-ranked Gulf Coast State College went sour almost from the start.

Playing their second game in less than 24 hours, the Jaguars fell behind by 16 at halftime and lost 76-43 at Jaguar Arena on the Decatur Campus.

“That’s elite status right there. Definitely in the top 10 or top five,” said coach James Waldon, referring to Gulf Coast, a perennial national power under Hall of Fame coach Roonie Scovel, who has produced three national champions and 13 Panhandle Conference champions as she enters her 16th season.

Added Waldon, “This shows us what we have to do to close the gap.”

On a day little went right for the Jaguars, backcourt play was a particular sore spot. In this case, literally, as Kamiya Burwell was limited to a handful of minutes by a balky knee after a splendid game Friday night (10 assists, 9 points, 6 steals, 6 rebounds).

The Jaguars were already missing two key players from their backcourt, Chancellar Martin and Deanna Downer. Both are expected back before the region season resumes in January.

Ashley Robinson led the Jaguars (4-4) with 16 points. Brittany Logan finished with 9 points and 12 rebounds after slugging it out inside with Gulf Coast’s Markeisha Gatling, who has signed with North Carolina State. Logan is 6 feet 4 and Gatling 6-5, making it a rare battle of true post players.

Ronita Garrett added 7 rebounds as the Jaguars outrebounded Gulf Coast 53-52. That mattered little as GPC shot 23 percent from the field.

Uju Ugoka led Gulf Coast (10-1) with 16 points and 8 rebounds. Keyrra Gillespie had 13 points, 8 rebounds and 9 assists. Gatling finished with 10 points and 5 rebounds.

After Gulf Coast led 36-18 at halftime, Ugoka scored two quick baskets at the start of the second half, ending any Jaguar comeback hopes.

Next for the Jaguars is a visit next Saturday to Wallace State Community College in Hanceville, Ala., followed two road trips to Tennessee during the holiday break.

The Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association schedule resumes on Jan. 5 at Chattahoochee Technical College in Marietta. GPC’s next home game will be Jan. 7 against East Georgia College. That game will be webcast at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

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December 9, 2011

Jaguars get 4th straight win, face No. 7 Gulf Coast next

Georgia Perimeter College coach James Waldon saw plenty to like in Friday night’s victory over Central Georgia Technical College on the Decatur Campus. And, in the bargain, a few things he’d rather not see again.

Monique Tillis scored 15 points.

“At times we showed what our potential is,” said Waldon after the 80-54 win. “At other times we showed how much work we need to do.”

The victory was a warmup for the main event of the weekend, Saturday’s 4 p.m. rematch in Decatur against Gulf Coast State College, ranked No. 7 in the country. The game will be audio webcast, with a link available at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

The Jaguars lost their opener to Gulf Coast 63-57 at an event in Marianna, Fla. They went on to lose twice more to tough opponents before starting a turnaround with an upset of Walters State of Tennessee, then ranked No. 8.

Friday’s win gave GPC a four-game streak. Monique Tillis hit her first three 3-pointers of the game and went on to a 15-point night. Fanny Cavallo had 14, Brittany Logan 12 and Shekinah Alexander 11.

Cavallo made it a double-double with 16 rebounds as the Jaguars won the battle of the boards 53-36.

“She just quietly goes about what she’s doing,” Waldon noted. “She was getting the rebounds and making good passes. She also had some nice put-backs.”

Kamiya Burwell had a noteworthy night with six steals and 10 assists to go with her seven points.

After leading 42-32 at halftime, the Jaguars appeared to have the game put away midway through the second half. But a couple of quick 3-pointers by the Cougars cut the margin to 10 with 9:07 left, prompting Waldon to call a timeout. The tide quickly shifted back to the Jaguars.

Amber Howell scored 16 points for Central Georgia Tech, which fell to 1-3 in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association, 4-6 overall.

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

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December 3, 2011

Three double-doubles lead Jaguars to 102 in Meridian

Georgia Perimeter College got the high-speed tempo it wanted and blazed to a 102-74 women’s basketball win Saturday at Meridian (Miss.) Community College.

Ronita Garrett led with 19 points.

Ronita Garrett led the Jaguars for the second consecutive game with 19 points. Three others reached double figures—Brittany Logan (18), Ashley Robinson (14) and Monique Tillis (14). Two others, Shekinah Alexander and Fanny Cavallo, finished with eight on a balanced afternoon for scoring.

It was a night for double-doubles. Garrett and Logan pulled down 12 rebounds each, and Robinson had 10, though Meridian amassed more than GPC, 60-53.

Garrett made 4 of 6 three-point attempts, and Tillis hit 4 of 8.

Kamiya Burwell handed out a whopping total of 12 assists as the Jaguar defense induced 30 turnovers, 21 on steals. It created numerous layups as the visitors recorded 29 assists.

It took awhile for the Jaguars to seize the lead and level their record to 3-3 after an 0-3 start. But the quick pace set by both pressing teams was to GPC’s liking, and it was a matter of time before their depth wore down the Eagles.

A 46-38 halftime lead soon widened as all 10 Jaguars logged at least 12 minutes. Chancellar Martin and Deanna Downer are out indefinitely with injuries.

Meridian (4-3) made it a total of five double-doubles on the night—Chassity Kearney led the Eagles with 22 points and 14 rebounds, followed by Arnissa Galloway with 18 points and 15 rebounds.

There were plenty of rebounds to be had. GPC fired 94 shots, Meridian 79.

GPC can move above .500 by extending the streak Friday against Central Georgia Technical College, a new Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association member. The game starts at 5:30 p.m. on the Decatur Campus. Fans can listen to the online broadcast with a link at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

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November 30, 2011

Defense shines as Jaguars open region season with a victory

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars opened their region season Wednesday night with an outstanding defensive effort, forcing 38 turnovers in a 76-32 victory over undefeated East Georgia College at the Bobcats’ gym in Swainsboro.

Burwell

Garrett

Fresh off a win at home over Walters State Community College of Tennessee, ranked No. 8 at the time, the Jaguars opened a 35-17 lead at halftime and never looked back.

Kamiya Burwell contributed eight steals as the Jaguars stifled the offense of the Bobcats, who had won all of their previous eight games. It was the conference opener for both teams.

The Jaguars are 2-3 going into a game Saturday at Meridian Community College of Mississippi. Their next home game is Dec. 9 at home against another Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association opponent, Central Georgia Tech.

Ronita Garrett, playing off the bench, led a balanced Jaguar attack with 15 points. Brittany Logan had 14 and Fanny Cavallo 10. Logan had 10 rebounds for her fourth double-double in five games.

Burwell (8), Ashley Robinson (8) and Cavallo (7) also did significant work on the boards for the Jaguars.

Valese McCallister was the leading scorer for East Georgia (8-1) with 13 points and also had 11 rebounds. Nobody else had more than four points against GPC’s pressing, swarming defense.

The Jaguars have not lost a regular-season conference game since Valentine’s Day 2010, and this is their 16th straight. They won the GCAA (Region 17 of the NJCAA) last season with a 14-0 record.

After the Dec. 9 league game with Central Georgia Tech and a rigorous string of road games through the end of the month, they begin the conference schedule in earnest in January.

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November 26, 2011

GPC Classic: Jaguars upset No. 8 Senators

In a classic finish to an exciting invitational tournament, the Georgia Perimeter College women’s basketball team rallied to upend previously undefeated Walters State Community College 47-44 Saturday in the GPC Classic at the Decatur Campus.

Kamiya Burwell had 14 points and a key assist down the stretch. Photo/Louie Favorite

Walters State (7-1), ranked eighth in the National Junior College Athletic Association poll, employed a methodical half-court offense to slow the Jaguars’ up-tempo game. The Senators led throughout the first half, which ended with a eye-catching low score of 21-18.

Georgia Perimeter (1-3) made adjustments at halftime, caught the visitors early in the second half and held on for the victory.

“I told them to get the ball inside,” said GPC head coach James Waldon. “The outside shot just wasn’t falling. We didn’t turn the ball over as much in the second half and got the up-tempo going better, too.”

Kamiya Burwell scored 14 points to lead the Jaguars, and Brittany Logan posted her third double-double of the season with 12 points and 12 rebounds.

Veda Cook followed with 10 points; Shekinah Alexander had 7 and Ronita Garrett had 4—and that was the sum total of the scoring for GPC.

Portia Durrett paced Walters State with 13 points and 8 rebounds. Megan Wallace contributed 11 points, and Akia Jones racked up 7 assists.

Free throws made a big difference in the outcome. The Jaguars shot 87.5 percent from the charity stripe, while Walters State hit only half of its attempts.

GPC took the lead for the first time, 23-22, in the second half on two free throws by Burwell, who sank 6 of her 7 foul shots. A field goal by Alexander put the Jags up 26-22, and they never again trailed.

When the Senators tied it at 32-32, Logan scored with an assist by Cavallo; Burwell and Cook exchanged assists and baskets and Burwell dropped in another pair of foul shots to make it 40-32.

Still, the Senators never caved in, drawing within one, 45-44 on a pressure-packed 3-point goal by Caprisha Rogers from the left corner. They deliberately fouled Cook on the inbound play, and she iced the game with two from the line with one second on the clock.

Waldon said the victory was a morale boost after the Jaguars had fallen to two ranked teams and started the season at 0-3.

“Obviously, we’ve got talent—it’s just putting it all together,” he said. “Before the game I told the team it was a new day for them. Their time had arrived.”

Next for the Jaguars: a trip to Swainsboro Wednesday for a 5:30 tip-off with East Georgia College, opening GPC’s Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association schedule. The game will be audio webcast with a link at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

SOUTH GEORGIA TECH 64, WALLACE STATE 62: Shontae McCall won a thrilling nip-and-tuck battle for South Georgia Technical College, sinking a soft 15-foot jumper from the right of the key with six seconds showing on the clock

McCall led the Jets (2-6) with 25 points, followed by Shanique Holston with 19 points and 7 rebounds. Samantha Phillips had 9 points and 6 rebounds.

For Wallace State Community College (3-4) Haley Stewart led with 21 points, and TaCouya Allen added 13. The Lions rallied to seize a 56-54 advantage via two deep 3-pointers by Stewart, but they couldn’t keep the lead.

SOUTHWEST TENNESSEE 103, MERIDIAN 86: Southwest Tennessee Community College and Meridian Community College opened the second day of the GPC Classic with an NBA score—Southwest 103, Meridian 86.

Erica Ousley poured in 25 points—19 in the first half—to lead Southwest (9-1). Jenisha Jackson had 18 points, Amber Dunlap 17 and Jawnada Buckley 10.

Gelese Lampton led Meridian (3-2) with 21 points, followed by Chasity Kearney and Norianna Haynes with 17 points each. Kearney had 12 rebounds, and Haynes had four steals.

The teams battled to a whopping 53-53 tie at the halftime. Midway through the second half, Southwest went on a 17-2 run to secure the win.

JEFFERSON COLLEGE 74, ROANE STATE 61: Rayven Brooks scored 19 points and grabbed 11 rebounds as Jefferson joined South Georgia Tech and Southwest Tennessee as the undefeated teams in the GPC Classic.

Jefferson controlled most of the game but couldn’t quite shake off the pesky Raiders. The Vikings (6-1) had four players in double figures—Brooks, LaQuinta Jefferson (15), Nicole Thomas (11) and Jasmine Crawford (10).

Jill Herman piled up 24 points to lead Roane State Community College (3-4).

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November 25, 2011

Short-handed Jags fall to No. 14 in GPC Classic

With four key players sidelined or slowed by injuries, the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars put forth a valiant effort against a ranked team but lost to Jefferson College of Missouri 71-68 Friday in the GPC Classic at the Decatur Campus.

Ashley Robinson, 33,scored 17 points, and Ronita Garrett, left, grabbed 19 rebounds for the Jaguars. Photos/Stephanie Nice

Jefferson (5-1) came into the game ranked 14th in the National Junior College Athletic Association poll, but had their hands full with the Jaguars’ scrappy, uptempo game. Behind until late in the game, the Saluqis rallied with exceptional talent and bench strength to outlast the hamstrung hosts.

“Until we get people healthy, it’s going to be a challenge,” said GPC head coach James Waldon. “Sometimes you have to play the hand you’re dealt.

“I saw more good than bad out there,” he noted.

There was plenty to cheer. The Jaguars (0-3) were led by Ashley Robinson’s 17 points, Ronita Garrett’s 19 rebounds and Fanny Cavallo’s 15 boards. Playing with an injured shoulder, Robinson got her points in only 22 minutes of action, sparking the team off the bench. Cavallo had 5 steals and 4 blocked shots.

Other scoring was balanced for the Jags, who had seven players with 6 or more points—12 for Veda Cook and 8 each for Garrett, Monique Tillis and Kamiya Burwell, who handed out nine assists. Cavallo scored 7 and Shekinah Alexander had six.

Terriyine Singleton and Jasmine Crawford scored 12 apiece and LaQuinta Jefferson put in 11 to pace the winners, who duplicated the balance—seven Vikings dropped in 6 or more points. Five combined to make 8-of-21 from 3-point range, and they were dangerous inside, though GPC outscored them in the paint 48-44.

Forward/post Fanny Cavallo, left, collected 15 rebounds, 5 steals and 4 blocked shots.

Also dominating the glass 57-40, GPC led most of the game, jumping out to 7-1, holding on to a 35-33 edge at halftime and stretching it to 50-36 with 14:15 left in the game.

Then the Vikings went on a 12-0 run, eventually taking their first lead at 58-57 on a layup by Rayven Brooks during another stretch of 9 unanswered points.

Trailing by 9 in the final minute, the Jaguars refused to fold, closing it to 3 on goals by Cook and Cavallo and a steal and basket by Shekinah Alexander. But their last-second 3-point play went awry.

SOUTH GEORGIA TECH 71, ROANE STATE 62: Shanique Holston scored 19 points and grabbed 11 rebounds to lead South Georgia Technical College over Roane State Community College in the opening game of the GPC Classic.

Shontae McCall added 13 points and 16 rebounds for the Jets (1-6), while Holston grabbed 11 rebounds. Tech dominated the boards 53-29. Inna Leja contributed 5 assists and 3 steals.

Jill Herman pumped in 20 points and dished off 8 assists for Roane State (3-3).

No. 8 WALTERS STATE 75, MERIDIAN 61: Portia Durrett and Megan Wallace powered Walters State Community College to victory with 19 points apiece. Kylie Smith added 10 points for the Senators (7-0).

Durrett also pulled down 19 rebounds, and fellow forward Megan Wallace had 8 boards. Akia Jones posted 5 assists.

Walters State is ranked No. 8 in the NJCAA poll.

For Meridian Community College (3-1), Norianna Haynes scored 19 points, and Chasity Kearney added 14. Arnissa Galloway led the Eagles on the glass with 10 rebounds.

SOUTHWEST TENNESSEE 74, WALLACE STATE 66: Cratisha Jones scored 17 points and Kandi Granger followed with 16 for Southwest Tennessee Community College (8-1). The Saluqis, who led 35-32 at halftime, held a slight edge in rebounds, led by Jenisha Jackson with 12.

Wallace State Community College (3-3) was led by Ashley Nance with 14 points and Haley Stewart with 12. The Lions specialized in thefts with 13—Nishia Walker, Arkia Armstrong and TaCouya Allen each swiped 3.

The eight-team invitational resumes Saturday with games at noon, 2, 4 and 6 p.m. Georgia Perimeter faces No. 8 Walters State in the finale, which will be audio broadcast online. Tune in by visiting www.gpc.edu/athletic and finding the link under “Game Webcasts.”

The GPC Classic is played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034. Follow the Jaguars on Facebook and Twitter.

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November 16, 2011

Logan named GCAA Player of the Week

Brittany Logan, sophomore center for Georgia Perimeter College, was named player of the week by the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association after scoring 35 points and grabbing 23 rebounds in two games in Marianna, Fla., last weekend.

Brittany Logan

Logan, who stands 6 feet 4, shot 62 percent from the field. Her teammate on the front line, fellow sophomore Ashley Robinson, also had two strong games, but the Jaguars lost both times, 63-57 to No. 13 Gulf Coast State College and 77-66 to Indian River State College.

As a freshman last season, Logan averaged 6.4 points per outing and led the team in rebounds with a 9.4 per game average, in field goal percentage, 49.8 percent, and in blocked shots, 0.9 per game.

The Jaguars started this season ranked No. 16 but dropped out of the latest National Junior College Athletic Association poll released Wednesday. Gulf Coast vaulted all the way to No. 2 behind Trinity Valley Community College of Texas.

But the Jaguars will have chances soon to move back into the poll. They next play in the GPC Classic on Friday, Nov. 25—the day after Thanksgiving—at 6 p.m. against Jefferson College of Hillsboro, Mo. Their opponent on the following Saturday at 6 will be Walters State Community College of Morristown, Tenn. Both teams are currently ranked, Jefferson at No. 18 and Walters State at No. 12.

On Dec. 10 the Jaguars will host a rematch with Gulf Coast at the Decatur Campus gymnasium.

The GPC Classic, a favorite with recruiters from four-year schools because of the strength of the field, has eight teams and action from noon until 8 or so. The remainder of the schedule: Friday at noon, Roane State of Tennessee vs. South Georgia Tech; 2 p.m., Meridian Community College of Mississippi vs. Walters State; 4 p.m., Wallace State-Hanceville vs. Southwest Tennessee. Saturday at noon, Southwest Tennessee vs. Meridian; 2 p.m., Jefferson vs. Roane State; 4 p.m., South Georgia Tech vs. Wallace State-Hanceville.

A note about the 0-2 start by the Jaguar women: They lost two at an early Florida event last season and three more nonregion road games before Christmas. Then they ran the table all the way to the national tournament, finishing seventh in the 16-team extravaganza.

Next weekend’s GPC Classic will be played at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034. Follow the Jaguars on Facebook and Twitter.

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November 13, 2011

Logan has a big day, but Jaguars lose to Indian River

Despite a 23-point, 13-rebound performance by center Brittany Logan, the No. 14-ranked Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars lost 77-66 on Sunday to Indian River State College at the JUCO Women’s Basketball Report Classic in Marianna, Fla.

Logan, a 6-foot-4 sophomore who went to J.L. Mann Academy in Greenville, S.C., also had two blocked shots and a steal. Another sophomore, Ashley Robinson, contributed 13 points and six rebounds.

The Jaguars (0-2) have almost two weeks off before they play Jefferson College of Hillsboro, Mo., at 6 p.m. on the Friday after Thanksgiving. The game is part of the two-day, eight-team GPC Classic at the Jaguar Arena on the Decatur Campus.

Shekinah Alexander, also a sophomore, contributed 11 points and three assists for GPC before fouling out. Kamiya Burwell, who transferred from Tallahassee Community College, also fouled out, finishing with eight points.

Fanny Cavallo, a transfer from the College of Southern Idaho, contributed eight rebounds, but despite her efforts and Logan’s the Jaguars were outrebounded 48-41 by Indian River (3-2). Indian River led 34-28 at halftime.

Precious Roberts led the winners with 17 points, while Yesenia Lora had 12. Tiaunshe Brown had a double-double, 10 points and 12 rebounds.

Georgia Perimeter’s games in the GPC Classic will be audio broadcast on the web with links at www.gpc.edu/athletic under “Game Webcasts.”

The GPC Classic will be held on Nov. 25 and 26 at GPC’s Decatur Campus, 3251 Panthersville Road, Decatur Ga. 30034.

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November 12, 2011

16th-ranked Jaguars fall to No. 13 Gulf Coast in opener

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars knew they were in for a tough opener against perennial national power Gulf Coast State College on Saturday and wound up on the short end of a 63-57 score at the JUCO Women’s Basketball Report Classic in Marianna, Fla.

Ashley Robinson led the Jaguars with 17 points, followed by Brittany Logan with 12 and Kamiya Burwell with 10. All are sophomores, with Robinson and Logan holdovers from last season’s national tournament team and Burwell a transfer from Tallahassee Community College.

The Jaguars play Indian River State College of Florida on Sunday at 2 p.m. Eastern and then get almost two weeks off before their home opener against Jefferson College of Hillsboro, Mo., at 6 p.m. on the Friday after Thanksgiving. The game is part of the two-day, eight-team GPC Classic at the Jaguar Arena on the Decatur Campus.

Early foul trouble by Logan and point guard Chancellar Martin, a transfer from Middle Georgia College, hurt the Jaguars in the first half against Gulf Coast, which took a 35-26 lead at intermission. GPC rallied to take the lead in the second half and there were several lead changes before Gulf Coast (4-0) finally put the game away.

Despite the foul trouble, Logan finished with 10 rebounds, giving her a double-double. Freshman Ronita Garrett had eight points and six rebounds for the Jaguars. Fanny Cavallo, a sophomore transfer from the College of Southern Idaho, contributed six points and seven rebounds.

Uju Ugoka led Gulf Coast with 20 points and 10 rebounds. Markiesha Gatling also had a double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds.

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November 7, 2011

Jaguars gear up, intent on another run to nationals

Lots of faces have changed around the Georgia Perimeter College women’s basketball program. The concepts haven’t.

Head coach James Waldon and his staff are again teaching basic values: defense, teamwork, pushing the tempo and letting the point-scoring glory fall to different players on different nights, depending on circumstances. Call it the GPC way.

After a two-year absence, the Jaguars returned to the National Junior College Athletic Association national tournament last season, finishing seventh by storming back with three victories after losing their opener to the eventual champion. Now they hope begin another string like their four consecutive appearances from 2005 to 2008.

“This team could be better than last year’s,” said Waldon, who is entering his 14th season at GPC. “I know that’s a tall order, but they could be better.”

Four key contributors to the 2011 team departed for NCAA Division 1, but this season’s group is far from green. Four transfers join four holdovers.

Robinson

Logan

The key returnees are starting center Brittany Logan, one of the top rebounders in the league, and forward Ashley Robinson, who can score inside or outside. “Cool under fire,” as Waldon puts it.

“Both had a big hand in what we accomplished last season,” said the coach. “So far they have been taking the lead, showing the others how to get it done.”

Logan, at 6 feet 4, averaged 9.4 rebounds and proved she could muscle her way in for baskets against multiple defenders. Robinson, at 6 feet, averaged 8.3 points and pulled down her share of rebounds (6.1).

“We need to excel at defense, like last year, and control the glass,” said Waldon. “That will be the difference between a good team and an outstanding team.”

The other two holdovers, reserve guards Shekinah Alexander and Deanna Downer, will step into larger roles.

Downer

Alexander

Meanwhile, the transfers come with credentials. Fanny Cavallo, a native of France, has made an early impression after averaging 8.7 points last season in JUCO at the College of Southern Idaho.

“She’s a really nice player. Big (6 feet) and versatile,” said Waldon.

Point guard Chancellar Martin, a native of Augusta who transferred from Middle Georgia College, also stands 6 feet. “Exciting to watch,” said Waldon.

Also competing for time in the backcourt will be Kamiya Burwell, who averaged 8.9 points at Tallahassee Community College in Florida, and Monique Tillis, a transfer from Notre Dame de Namur University, an NCAA Division 2 school in the San Francisco Bay.

Tillis “can shoot the lights out,” said Waldon. “She just needs to be a little more confident in her ability.”

The Jaguars’ four signees out of high school (Veda Cook of Brunswick, DaJae Burnett of Chicago, Ronita Garrett of McCormick, S.C., and ShaRon Forte’ of McDonough) will get ample opportunity to show they can make the transition to the college game. Waldon has a track record of going deep into his bench to keep up the defensive pressure all over the court.

A fifth signee, Destiny Tejada, a native of Michigan who went to North Clayton High School, will be redshirted.

So will Kayla Carter, a first team all-region pick last year. She is taking a year off to work on her studies, with an eye toward moving to NCAA Division 1 after the 2013 season.

The Jaguars’ record last season, 31-6, and their talented roster prompted the nation’s coaches to award them the No. 16 preseason ranking, but they could move up fast. The season opener is Saturday against No. 13 Gulf Coast State College—always a basketball power—at an invitational in Marianna, Fla. Sunday the Jaguars conclude their visit to Marianna, facing Indian River State College.

The journey that the Jaguars hope will end in Kansas includes traditional rivals such as South Georgia Tech, Darton College and Middle Georgia College. The pre-January schedule includes only four home games, one of them an early region game, another a rematch against Gulf Coast. The road schedule to various points in the Southeast is a rough one.

“I believe in playing people,” said Waldon, who will be settling in for some long bus rides. “Easy wins aren’t very gratifying.”

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

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September 13, 2011

Tryouts announced for women’s basketball, women’s tennis

Head coach James Waldon announced that tryouts for the Georgia Perimeter College women’s basketball team will be held on Saturday, Sept. 17, at 12 noon in the Decatur Campus gymnasium.

For more information, contact coach Waldon at james.waldon@gpc.edu or 404-409-5332.

Also, head coach “Reda” Mohamed Nait Omar announced that his women’s tennis team needs more players. To try out for the GPC women’s tennis team, contact coach Nait Omar at mohamed.omar@gpc.edu or assistant coach Akeem Byron, 561-704-5016.

Follow all Jaguar sports on Twitter and Facebook, or at www.gpc.edu/athletic

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