December 16, 2013

PREVIEW: #Nighthawks To Host Peach Belt Foe Flagler In Final Pre-Holiday Contest

DAHLONEGA, Georgia – (UNGAthletics.com) – The University of North Georgia basketball teams will wrap up the pre-holiday schedule with a Peach Belt Conference doubleheader with visiting Flagler College this evening in Memorial Hall.  The game will be Lumpkin County Parks & Recreation Night and will honor the local youth teams during a presentation at halftime of the men's game.  

For those North Georgia fans that are not able to make the game, you can still follow all the live action through Nighthawk Vision.  The game will feature live statistics merged with a three-camera live video feed.  Glory 1330 of Gainesville will be on site to provide the audio feed that will merge with the live video and stats.

Glory 1330's audio will overlay over the top of the Nighthawk Vision's three-camera live video production providing UNG fans with a full-scale live production of home games.  The live interface also features merged live statistics with viewers able to toggle between the live video/audio feed and sortable live statistics.

Drew Harris and Mike Wofford, a 1979 graduate of North Georgia, will provide the audio broadcast live from Memorial Hall.

Women's Game Notes:  Flagler (2-6, 0-1 PBC) vs. North Georgia (7-1, 1-0 PBC)

Monday, December 16 - 5:30 PM - Memorial Hall - Dahlonega, Ga.

NIGHTHAWKS SINK PIRATES 80-65 IN PEACH BELT OPENER: Stephanie Huffman and Jaymee Carnes registered 19 points apiece to lead four Nighthawks in double figures in the University of North Georgia's 80-65 Peach Belt Conference victory over Armstrong Atlantic State University on Saturday in Memorial Hall.  The victory marks the fifth consecutive season the Nighthawks have opened up PBC play with a victory.  Carnes added a season-best seven blocks and five assists to compliment her 19 points while Huffman recorded a complete game of eight rebounds and seven assists with the duo combining for 26 first half points – Carnes (15) and Huffman (11).  "It was good for us to start our conference schedule off on a good note," stated UNG head coach Buffie Burson.  "I am proud of how unselfish we played and how we used a wide range of contributions from a lot of different players.  This league is going to require collective effort every night and I am glad we were able to play together tonight." Mimi Hill and Molly Rainwater added 12 and 11 points respectively to round out North Georgia's double figure scorers.  AASU's Tyler Carlson collected a team-best 17 points but was limited to just two points in the second half after netting 15 before intermission.  Brigitta Barta added 16 while Bryonna Davis scored 10 for the Pirates.  The game's first five minutes saw UNG race out to a 17-6 lead capped by a three-pointer from Keeley Chester.  A layup by Armstrong's Mauri Wells would cut the Pirates' deficit to nine but a three from Rainwater would put the North Georgia back to double figures for the rest of the evening. A Chester layup with 3:55 left in the half gave the Nighthawks their largest lead of the first frame 42-20. The second half was all North Georgia as the Nighthawks would stretch their lead to a game-best 27 (71-44) on a pair of free throws by Carnes with 8:55 remaining. North Georgia (7-1, 1-0 PBC) assisted on 20 of its 29 made field goals and held a 42-37 advantage on the glass.  UNG shot 48% (29-60) on the night and limited the Pirates to 23-66 (35%).  Armstrong (4-2, 0-1 PBC) was plagued by 16 turnovers.

SCOUTING FLAGLER: Shelbi Lindsey scored a team-high 21 points but it wasn't enough as Young Harris College prevailed with a 65-56 win over Flagler College in the Peach Belt Conference women's basketball opener for both teams Saturday afternoon at the YHC Basketball Arena. Young Harris extended its winning streak to four games and improved to 4-2 overall and 1-0 in the Peach Belt. Flagler lost its fourth game in a row and dropped to 2-6 overall and 0-1 in conference play. The Mountain Lions used a 15-4 run just after the midway point in the second half to wipe out a one-point deficit (49-48). Ladondra Johnson scored a game-high 26 points and grabbed a game-high 12 rebounds to lead the Mountain Lions. Smith added 11 points, four assists, four rebounds and three steals. Jenna Thompson chipped in with 10 points. Young Harris dominated in the paint as it out-scored Flagler 40-15. Rodnecia Brown came off the bench to score a career-high 12 points and added three assists. She logged 27 minutes as starting guard Williesha Spencer dealt with foul trouble in the second half and fouled out with a little over six minutes left in the game. Spencer entered the game averaging 23.7 points per game but was held to seven points - all scored in the first half. Treva Mason grabbed a team-high 10 rebounds. The Saints held its largest lead, nine points (19-10), with 6:42 to go in the half when Spencer completed the three-point play after being fouled on a made layup.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS:  Today's game features two of the Peach Belt Conference's top three scorers in UNG's Jaymee Carnes (22.0 ppg) and Flagler's Williesha "Shorty" Spencer (21.6 ppg) as both players were PBC preseason All-Conference selections ... North Georgia (81.2 ppg) and Flagler (76.1 ppg) rank 1st and 3rd respectively in the league in scoring ... Stephanie Huffman matched her season high in rebounds (8) and set a new season best in assists (7) in Saturday's win ... North Georgia has won all 13 of the previous meetings between the two schools.

Men's Game Notes:  Flagler (5-2, 0-1 PBC) vs. North Georgia (3-4, 0-1 PBC)
Monday, December 16 - 7:30 PM - Memorial Hall - Dahlonega, Ga.

SLUGGISH START DOOMS UNG IN 84-79 PEACH BELT LOSS: The University of North Georgia men's basketball team rallied back from an early hole 17-point hole but would ultimately come up short in an 84-79 Peach Belt Conference loss to visiting Armstrong Atlantic State University on Saturday in Memorial Hall.  Ishmael Hollis scored a team-hight 22 points to lead four Nighthawks in double figures in the team's league opener. Armstrong (4-4, 1-0 PBC) would race out of the gate after scoring 16 of the game's first 20 points to lead 20-6 at the 12:20 mark.  The Pirates would extend their lead to a game high 17 (23-6) less than a minute later on a free throw by Eric Eversley. North Georgia (3-4, 0-1 PBC) would gather momentum late in the first period.  Trailing 32-25 with 4:38 remaining, UNG would end the half on a 11-2 run punctuated with a buzzer-beating layup by Travis Core giving the Nighthawks their first lead of the game 36-34 at the break. AASU opened the second frame on a 14-3 run to take a 48-39 lead and the Pirates would maintain a two-possession lead until a layup by Core at the 7:11 mark would cut the lead to a single point (62-61).  Armstrong would take control of the game over the next five minutes with a 12-4 run to take a 74-65 lead with just 2:31 remaining.  Core finished with 18 points and seven assists.  Lamar Richardson added 17 to the Nighthawks' cause including a 5-12 performance from behind the three-point line.  Michael Varrichione came off the bench and added 11 points for North Georgia.  Hichem Benayad Cherif tallied a double-double of 19 points and 10 rebounds for AASU while Eversley completed a double-double of his own with 15 points and 10 collections.  Kenny Bellinger II pitched in with 17 points for the Pirates. The shooting percentages balanced out with AASU connecting on 25-58 (43%) compared to UNG's 29-66 (44%) but Armstrong held a decisive 47-33 edge on the glass. The victory ended three-game slide for Armstrong.

SCOUTING FLAGLER:  Lydell Manigo and Keith Matthews each scored 13 points but Flagler College couldn't get past Young Harris College in an 82-72 loss in the Peach Belt Conference men's basketball opener for both teams Saturday afternoon at the YHC Basketball Arena. The Mountain Lions used a 23-6 run over a 5:53 span midway through the second half to erase a 54-52 Saints lead. Free throws played a key part in the run as Young Harris made 8 of 9 from the charity stripe. The run started when Isaiah Johnson sank a pair of free throws with 9:16 left to tie the game at 54-all, and Bjorn Walker ended the spurt by sinking two free throws with 3:23 left. Young Harris closed the first half with a 17-3 run to head into the locker rooms with a 35-22 lead. Flagler scored 14 of the first 15 points of the second half to tie the score at 36-all with 16:38 remaining. The Mountain Lions forced a season-high 19 turnovers by the Saints and converted those into 28 points. Young Harris only shot 36.2% (25-69) from the field, but was able to make 26 free throws in 37 attempts (70.3%). Matthews tallied all 13 of his points in the first half. Dennis Diaz added 12 points and four rebounds while Richard Brown chipped in with 10 points and dished out three assists. Adam Jones corralled a team-high eight rebounds and added six points.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS: Ishamel Hollis currently ranks tops in the Peach Belt Conference in scoring (22.3 ppg) and third in rebounding (10.0 rpg) ... North Georgia (89.4 ppg) and Flagler (83.1 ppg) rank second and fourth in the PBC in scoring ... UNG and Flagler have met 13 times since NCAA Division II membership with North Georgia holding a 12-1 all-time advantage including a 92-87 overtime win in St. Augustine, Fla. last season in the teams' only meeting ... Tonight's game is Lumpkin County Parks & Recreation Night with the youth teams being recognized in a short halftime presentation.

UP NEXT: Today's game marks the final game prior to the holiday break as the Nighthawks are slated to return to action on Saturday, January 4th with a Peach Belt Conference game at Georgia College in Milledgeville.  The doubleheader is set for a 1:30 PM tipoff.  If traveling with the Nighthawks is not an option, UNG basketball fans can follow all the action through the UNG Nighthawk Basketball Radio Network.  Live coverage beginning with an on-site coaches show will begin at 1:00 PM.