Ryan Weems understands his role at Augusta State.
When the junior guard comes off the bench, he’s expected to take shots and score. And he certainly knows what will happen if he doesn’t play his role.
“If I don’t shoot and be aggressive,” Weems said, “the guys will be mad with me.”
No one was upset with Weems after he poured in 20 points Sunday as the Jaguars rolled to a 96-57 win over Coastal Georgia at Christenberry Fieldhouse.
Augusta State improved to 2-0, with each of the 13 players scoring at least two points against the Mariners. The Jaguars scored their most points in a game since posting 101 against Life two seasons ago.
Weems made his first three shots – all 3-pointers – and posted 14 of his 20 points by halftime. Harold Doby added 15 points (7 for 7 from the foul line) in 15 minutes, while Devonte Thomas added 14. Center Chad July recorded 11 rebounds for the second game in a row.
The Jaguars shot 52 percent from the field, including a 9 for 17 effort from 3-point range. Augusta State also shot 23 of 28 from the free-throw line.
“There’s so much talent, so many pieces to this puzzle that you can go with pretty much any lineup,” said backup forward Roman Hill, who added eight points and seven boards off the bench. “All of us are hard workers. We’ve got a team full of hungry players wanting to win.”
Last year, Augusta State overcame an eight-point deficit in the second half for a 63-57 win at Coastal Georgia. This time, it was no contest.
Weems drilled his third 3-pointer to stake Augusta State to a 20-12 lead. Devon Wright-Nelson and Doby followed with a pair of steals and breakaway dunks to push the lead to 12.
Later, Weems scored on a layup to cap a 25-2 run. With 3:19 left in the first half, the Jaguars led 41-14
“I thought he was going to lead us in scoring at some time in the year, but I didn’t think it’d be the second game,” Augusta State coach Dip Metress said of Weems. “He has the ability to lead us in scoring. He can make shots. He can get by you. He’s a good player.”
Kostas Ezomo scored 10 points off the bench to lead Coastal Georgia (1-6). The Mariners shot 44 percent from the field and recorded 24 turnovers.
Augusta State now shifts its focus to Wednesday night’s home game against Benedict, a team that upended the Jaguars in overtime last season.
The Tigers (2-0) are led by former Laney standout Xavier Collier, a senior point guard.
“The bottom line is they beat us last year,” Metress said. “Them and our first three road conference games are all against teams that beat us at their place. In my mind, I know those games are coming.”