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LOCAL COLLEGE ROUNDUP: ATC, SGT hoops lose key conference games Saturday; Darton golf third after first round of Faulkner Invitational

Leshay Lettingham couldn't cap off her region Player of the Week honor with a win Saturday as the Albany Tech women fell to Chattahoochee Tech, 77-70, despite a team-high 17 points from Lettingham.

Leshay Lettingham couldn't cap off her region Player of the Week honor with a win Saturday as the Albany Tech women fell to Chattahoochee Tech, 77-70, despite a team-high 17 points from Lettingham.

ALBANY — Even another big game from reigning Region XVII Player of the Week Leshay Lettingham wasn’t enough to will the Albany Tech Lady Titans to a win Saturday as the regular season begins to wind down.

Lettingham, who earned her first POW honor for her dominating stretch a week ago after returning from a back injury, scored 18 points Saturday, but it wasn’t enough as Albany Tech fell to Chattahoochee Tech, 77-70, on Sophomore Night.

“She’s really picked it up since she came back from her back injury. She was a little afraid at first of hurting her back again — settling for a lot of jump shots instead of attacking the basket — but she’s definitely back now,” ATC women’s coach Kenneth Williams said. “It’s just tough we couldn’t pull this one out.”

Toni Grier added a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds, and Ashley Towns chipped in 12 points as the Lady Titans — who came into the game firmly intrenched as the No. 8 and final seed for the upcoming conference tournament — dropped t0 14-14 overall and 7-10 in region play.

ATC has two games left, starting with Wednesday at Georgia Highlands, and it can improve its standing just slightly if it wins both and gets some help.

CHATTAHOOCHEE TECH MEN 79, ALBANY TECH 56: The Titans were officially eliminated from playoff contention Saturday, dropping to 8-20 overall on the season and 4-14 in region with two games left.

But ATC coach Sylvester Patterson said he told his team afterward that there was still more than one thing to play for.

“No. 1, we’re trying to give the kids who didn’t a play a lot a chance to get in there so we can see what we have coming back next year. And then our next game is against Georgia Highlands — and they haven’t won a game all year,” Patterson said. “So there’s definitely motivation left. We don’t want to be their first.”

Terry Brown posted a double-double (11 points, eight rebounds) in the loss, while Tony Griggs led the Titans with 14 points.

GEORGIA PERIMETER MEN 57, SOUTH GEORGIA TECH 53: Once the darlings of the conference, the Jets have fallen on some hard, super unlucky times.

South Georgia, which boasts the nation’s leading scorer in the NJCAA in Anthony Etheridge, was battling for the No. 1 spot for much of the early part of the season, but the Jets have not only lost four straight following Saturday’s second defeat of the year to GPC, but they’ve fallen all the way to the sixth seed for the upcoming region tournament with just three regular-season games left.

“We can’t score. It’s that simple,” said Jets coach Steven Wright, whose team is now 19-8 overall after starting the season on fire. “And when you’re 12-for-27 from the free throw line like we were (Saturday), you’re not going to win very many games, if any, like that.”

Of course, Lady Luck hasn’t been on South Georgia Tech’s side lately either.

In those four straight losses, two have come in overtime, one was by a single point and the final one Saturday was by just four points.

“We’ve gone from a chance to win it to sixth,” Wright lamented. “But, hey ... that’s basketball. That’s why you wake up tomorrow and try to go out and figure it out, do it again and do it right.”

Etheridge led SGT on Saturday with 23 points, followed by B.J. Davis with 12.

The Jets, who can move up to as high as the fourth overall seed and host the first round with three straight wins to close the season, return to action Wednesday at Atlanta Metro.

GSW men's hoops' five-game win streak snapped

AMERICUS — The Augusta State men’s basketball team slowly and methodically broke down Georgia Southwestern on Saturday afternoon in the Storm Dome and spoiled the Hurricanes homecoming festivities, 52-43, in PBC action.

GSW had its five-game winning streak snapped and falls back to .500 at 12-12 overall. The Hurricanes are 8-9 in PBC play and tied with Clayton State for the No. 3 seed out of the West Division for the conference tournament coming up in March.

ASU set the pace early by spreading the floor and allowing most of the shot clock to tick down on each possession before moving play towards the basket. The strategy worked. The Hurricanes largest lead of the afternoon came just over two minutes into the game when Jamon Hawkins buried a 3-pointer to put GSW up 5-2. From there the Jaguars jumped ahead and eventually built a seven-point lead, 27-20, in time for the halftime brea, never looking back.

Matt Shaw led Southwestern with 14 points and a game-high seven rebounds.

The Hurricanes wrap up the road portion of their conference schedule Saturday when they travel to Clayton State for a 7:30 p.m. contest.

AUGUSTA STATE WOMEN 78, GSW 56: Augusta State used a hot shooting first half to run past GSW.

The Lady ‘Canes weathered the hot shooting storm, however, as freshman forward Jasmine McSwain poured in 13 first-half points of her own as Georgia Southwestern only found itself down nine, 42-33, at intermission despite Augusta State’s 68 percent shooting (17-25).

In the second half, ASU got off to another quick start as the Lady Jaguars outscored GSW, 18-7, to extend their lead to 20 points, 60-40 — and it was all but over from there.

GSW dropped their 13th consecutive game.

McSwain led GSW (3-21, 1-16 PBC) with 18 points while Danisha Green chipped in 14 points and totaled four thefts on the afternoon.

GSW will be back in action Saturday at Clayton State.

Darton golf third after opening round of Faulkner Invitational

FAIRHOPE, Ala. — Darton State College’s Nick Green is tied for first overall after one round of the Faulkner State Invitational.

But beyond that, that’s about as positive as the news got Saturday for the Cavaliers in their second spring tournament.

“We played terrible. The conditions were tough, yes, but the teams in front of us played bad too — and we’re nine shots back and facing another cold, tough day (today),” Darton coach Bill Jones III said. “Nick played pretty well, but he shot 74, and that was the low round of the day if that gives you any idea of how rough it was out there. We’re pretty disappointed.”

Parks Brown was second on the team with a 79, followed by Moultire’s Von Stripling and Robert Robertson with 80s. Madison Turner fired a dismal 88.

Jones, however, still feels like his guys can catch first-place Central Alabama, which shot a 304, followed by Wallace State (307), Darton (313), Meridian (314) and Brevard (316).

“It’s definitely still within reach, but we’ve got to stop leaving so many shots out there,” he said. “We’ll be in the final grouping, so we have to be ready to make a run at them.”

Miller leads GSW softball to sweep

AMERICUS — A two-run blast from Jordan Miller in the bottom of the third inning was all the Lady Hurricanes need to prevail over Brewton-Parker in the first game of the doubleheader.

GSW starting pitcher Allison Pastor (5-2) threw a complete game shutout for the Blue & Gold as the junior accounted for six stikeouts on the game.

Miller paced GSW (8-5) with three hits and two RBI’s on the contest.

GSW then won Game 2, 7-2.

In the second game, Miller came up big once again for Southwestern. The junior third baseman paced the Lady Hurricanes with two hits and four RBI on the game.

GSW (9-5) scored five runs over the final two innings to break a 2-2 stalemate to earn the sweep of the doubleheader.

Starting pitcher Ashley Cavender (2-1) tossed a complete game, striking out six for the Lady Hurricanes.

Miller finished the day with five hits and six RBI’s as Southwestern earned their fourth straight victory at home.

GSW will be back in action Thursday at Fort Valley State for a 1 p.m. doubleheader.