January 26, 2011

Saints Pull Off Overtime Thriller Over Flagler

DAHLONEGA, GA – Playing in their second overtime in the last three games, the North Georgia men's basketball team found another way to pull out a thriller, coming from behind in the extra period to take down Flagler College 87-83 in Peach Belt Conference action.

The Saints continue to roll, wining their third straight game and improving to 6-11 overall on the year and 3-5 in the Peach Belt Conference. Flagler falls to 9-7 on the season and 3-5 in league action with the defeat. North Georgia continues to dominate the series with Flagler, improving to 11-0 all-time against the newest member of the PBC.

With time ticking away in regulation and North Georgia up by a bucket, Flagler 's Kenny Moore came off a screen and hit a jumper with 1.6 remaining on the clock, sending the game to overtime deadlocked at 80-80.

The home crowd came right back to life in the opening seconds of overtime as Carl Taylor was fouled and connected on consecutive free throws to give the Saints a two-point edge, but Flagler's Eddie Fouler answered with a three-pointer on the other end to put the visiting Saints up by a point.

North Georgia then settled in at the charity stripe as Chaun Tinney forced another lead change with back-to-back free throws, and Jon Nolton followed, draining two foul shots of his own to give the Saints a three-point edge.

Flagler went cold on the offensive end in overtime following the three-pointer, a bucket that turned out to be their only score of the extra period as North Georgia clamped down on defense and held the visiting Saints scoreless over the final three minutes of overtime.

North Georgia held the game's largest lead in the first half, taking an 11-point advantage with 6:12 remaining on a jumper from Marquez Jackson to make it a 24-13 game. The Saints led by 10 points on two different occasions in the first half before Flagler cut the lead to seven at the break.

The score changed hands four times in the first half, two more times in the second period, and two more times again in overtime before North Georgia finally pulled away for the four-point victory.

Clarence Tillman led North Georgia with 23 points, going 10-for-14 from the free throw line, while adding nine rebounds in 37 minutes of action. Tinney finished in double figures with 12 points, while Taylor added 11 points, hitting a trio of three-pointers adding two assists.

Fowler paced Flagler with 23 points, while Chad July had 17 and Kenny More tallied 14 points and 13 rebounds for the game's only double-double. John Pietkiewicz rounded out the Flagler players in double figures, finishing with 13 points in 36 minutes of action.

The Saints will play their third game of the week on Saturday afternoon, welcoming in-state rival Armstrong Atlantic to town for a Peach Belt Conference battle. The contest will serve as Homecoming 2011 with festivities planned throughout the day.