Albany Tech men's coach Sylvester Patterson's team has won three straight following Saturday's victory.
SPECIAL TO THE HERALD
ALBANY — It’s been a tough season at the office for Albany Tech men’s basketball coach Sylvester Patterson.
But Saturday, many of those frustrations were washed away.
Albany Tech, which had been winless in region play and in last place until the Titans got win No. 1 last week, got No. 3 on Saturday, beating out Waycross, 66-50. Waycross (12-5, 4-4) came into the game fourth overall in the standings.
“Basically, we just came out, hit shots and rebounded better,” Patterson said. “That’s all we talked about at halftime, because they were killing us on the boards. They only made seven shots in the first half, but they had 11 offensive rebounds. That’s what we talked about; everyone needs to be on the boards boxing out, even the point guards. So we got back on the boards, went back and forth, hit a couple 3-pointers, and that’s not what they normally do. We withstood the storm and pulled it off.”
ATC led, 27-21, at the half, but the Swampfoxes kept hanging around.
That is, until the Titans used a 12-3 run — sparked by an Antwon Tuff 3-pointer — as the lead grew to 13 with as the second-half clock started to tick down.
Tuff led the way with 25 points on 7-for-17 shooting.
“Coach just told me to keep shooting,” Tuff said. “I wasn’t really shooting much early. He told me if you get an open look, take the shot.”
Patterson was glad to see his leading scorer take the reins in the second half.
“(Tuff’s) been doing that all year. He’s our leading scorer, he averaging about 16 per game. He was right at 38 percent (Saturday). That’s about his average,” Patterson said. “We held them to four offensive rebounds in the second half, but they had 11 in the first half. We’ve got to work on keeping ‘em off the boards.”
By the time former Dougherty star and current Titans guard Arabian Williams converted an and-one play for the Titans to go up 62-46, it was a wrap.
Albany’s Tevil Oliver snatched 14 rebounds, while forward Nouhoum Boucoum grabbed 10 of his own.
With the win, Albany Tech is now 7-12 overall and 3-7 in the conference. But more importantly, the Titans will take their first three-game win streak of the year into their next game at home against third-place South Georgia on Wednesday.
ALBANY TECH WOMEN 50, ANDREW COLLEGE 29: Earlier Saturday, the Lady Titans also earned a big region win to improve to 10-10 overall and 3-7 in region play, while Andrew College fell to 0-10 in region and is now just 1-14 overall.
Lady Tigers first-year coach Samantha Paradise was not pleased after the program’s 13th straight loss.
“Basically our whole effort was in those first 10 minutes,” she said. “After that, they kind of trailed off. The intensity wasn’t there. The fight wasn’t there.”
On the other hand, Lady Titans coach Kenneth Williams was glad to get the win, but he also saw room for improvement.
“It’s a great win for us, to start the season the way we did, dropping back to the bottom of the conference. But we can’t play lackadaisical. We came out flat, not hustling, letting them hang around and not playing to our potential,” he said. “We’ve got more to work on. We can’t keep turning the ball over so many times.”
The Lady Titans turned the ball over 14 times, but were also able to force 28 turnovers of their own.
Shanice Williams led the way for Albany Tech with 10 points and six rebounds, while Lashay Lettingham added eight points and three rebounds. In a losing effort, Hana Daniels led Andrew College with eight points and five rebounds.
Andrew will next host Georgia Perimeter in Cuthbert next Saturday, while ATC will face SGTC on Wednesday at home.
FLAGLER MEN 70, GSW 53: The Hurricanes had lost five out of their last six games coming into the Saturday afternoon showdown against the Saints, but a quick start by Flagler coupled with cold shooting for the Blue & Gold proved to be too much to overcome as GSW dropped their second straight Peach Belt Conference contest
Jamon Hawkins led GSW (7-8, 3-5 PBC) with 17 points and nine rebounds. Senior forward Milos Kluet chipped in 13 points and seven rebounds as GSW outrebounded Flagler, 39-31.
Southwestern will be back in action Monday as they travel to Armstrong Atlantic.
FLAGER WOMEN 85, GSW 54: A fast offensive start by the Flagler Saints proved to be trend of the game as the Saints were too much for Georgia Southwestern.
Southwestern never recovered as Flagler shot 51 percent from the field for the game and held a commanding 46-27 rebounding advantage over the Blue & Gold.
GSW was led by Jasmine McSwain’s 11 points and seven rebounds while Danisha Green added 10 points and five steals.
Former Mitchell County star Ottishia Burden came off the bench and chipped in a career-best eight points for the Lady Canes, who fall to 3-12, 1-7 in the Peach Belt Conference.
The Lady ‘Canes will be back in action Monday as they travel to Armstrong Atlantic.