Lady Jags saved by strong finish

Down 18 with less than nine minutes remaining, the Augusta State women never wavered.


Guard Brittany Jarrard gathered her team and gave them a simple reminder.

"She said, 'We still have time. Let's go,'" Lady Jaguars guard Nicole Mealing said. "That's when we picked it up."

Mealing capped a miraculous Augusta State comeback with a putback at the buzzer Monday night to lift the Lady Jaguars to a 71-69 win over Georgia College & State.

With a win in its Peach Belt Conference open er, Augusta State improved to 3-3 overall.

Mealing posted her fourth double-double of the season with a team-high 14 points and 11 rebounds. Tracey Paschal added 12 points, 12 rebounds and five assists. Jarrard chipped in with 12 points.

Augusta State played without starting point guard Eboni Davis, who served a one-game suspension for a violation of team academic rules. The Lady Jaguars shot just 37 percent from the field and committed 28 turnovers. But they won the rebounding battle, 55-35, the last board the most important one.

With the game tied, Georgia College & State's Dominique Huffin missed a 3-pointer with six seconds remaining.

Augusta State hurried up court, and Brittany Hudson missed a jumper from the free throw line. The ball fell off the rim to a waiting Mealing, who leaped up and kissed it off the glass as the buzzer sounded.

"I was worried the basket wouldn't count," Augusta State coach Tes Sobomehin said. "I did not want to go into overtime."

The Lady Jaguars connected on just three baskets the first 11 minutes after halftime and found themselves in a 65-47 hole.

"We realized we couldn't lose like this," Paschal said. "We just picked it up and started playing together. We started making shots when they counted. We just did what we had to do."

Jarrard hit a 3-pointer, Mealing later followed with another. Then, Paschal drained another.

Hudson hit a couple of key buckets to trim the deficit to three.

Augusta State trailed by two in the final minute when Porsha White scored on a layup .

The Lady Jaguars closed with a 24-4 run.

"We just needed a couple of made baskets, because you can't press when you're turning the ball over," Sobomehin said. "When we were able to put our press defense on that helped get us going."

Reach Chris Gay at (706) 823-3645 or

GC&SU (2-3, 0-1)-Tiauna Brantley 9-14 0-0 20, Antoinette Reames 7-12 2-6 16, Shandrea Moore 4-10 3-4 11, Dominique Huffin 2-13 0-0 6, Emily Bixler 0-1 2-2 2, Amanda Irwin 0-2 0-0 0, Candice Clark 1-5 0-2 2, Mandi Dudish 2-6 1-1 6, Jessica Baker 2-2 0-0 6, Katie Herndon 0-0 0-0 0, Tammeisha Law 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 27-65 8-15 69.

AUGUSTA STATE (3-3, 1-0)-Tracey Paschal 4-11 1-2 12, Nicole Mealing 6-12 0-0 14, Porsha White 2-8 3-4 7, Brittany Jarrard 4-13 0-0 12, Brittany Hudson 3-10 0-0 6, Brittany Torain 1-4 2-2 4, Kenisha Sheppard 3-6 2-3 9, Jasmine Godwin 2-5 1-1 5, Brooke Johnson 1-2 0-0 2. Totals: 26-71 9-12 71.

Halftime: GC&SU 41-39 3-point goals: GC&SU 7-21 (Brantley 2-3, Moore 0-2, Huffin 2-9, Dudish 1-5, Baker 2-2), Augusta State 10-24 (Paschal 3-5, Mealing 2-5, Jarrard 4-10, Hudson 0-1, Torain 0-1, Sheppard 1-1, Godwin 0-1). Rebounds: GC&SU 33 (Brantey 9), Augusta State 55 (Paschal, White 12). Assists: GC&SU 15 (Moore 5), Augusta State 17 (Paschal 5). Turnovers: GC&SU 16, Augusta State 28. Fouls: GC&SU 12, Augusta State 12. Fouled out: none. A-432.