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Albany State basketball splits with Clark Atlanta

ATLANTA — The Albany State men’s basketball team overcame a sluggish start and came back to beat Clark Atlanta on Monday, 59-49.

The Rams, who trailed by one at halftime, took the lead with 10 minutes left and then pushed their advantage to double digits to improve to 7-16 overall and 5-11 in the conference.

Jaren Harris led the Rams with 20 points, while former Dougherty star Andrew Covin added 15. Justin Udi and Eric Martin each scored 10 points for Albany State, which needs to win its final two games (Thursday vs. Morehouse and Saturday vs. Fort Valley State) and have Claflin lose its final two to secure fourth place in next week’s conference tournament.

CLARK ATLANTA WOMEN 64, ALBANY STATE 59: The Lady Rams lost their fourth consecutive conference game and lost out on a shot at fourth place in next week’s conference tournament.

With the loss, ASU (9-14, 6-9) is guaranteed the No. 5 seed in the East Division in the tournament. A win Monday and a win in Saturday’s season finale against Fort Valley State would have vaulted the Lady Rams into fourth place.

“The road gets harder (falling to fifth),” ASU coach Robert Skinner said. “You have to play four games to win it, so you have to stay positive about it. There is nobody in the tournament that we don’t think we can beat.”

The Lady Rams traded the lead back and forth in the second half with Clark Atlanta, which stayed in second place with the win.

Former Bainbridge star April Thomas led ASU with 29 points and was 11-for-22 from the floor and 7-for-14 from 3-point range.

“We could have gone to her more,” Skinner said. “She was hot, but we didn’t get the ball to her enough at the end of the game.”

Former Mitchell County star Kadeemya Cooper added a game-high 15 rebounds.