Augusta Overcomes Fayetteville State 76-75 In Final Seconds

Augusta Overcomes Fayetteville State 76-75 In Final Seconds
AUGUSTA, Ga. – Getting in one more game before the New Year, the Augusta University women's basketball team hosted the Fayetteville State Broncos on Friday night and survived a 21-point deficit to win 76-75 in non-conference action.


The Jaguars (5-3) trailed by as much as 21 to Fayetteville State (2-9) in the first half, but outscored them 46-31 in the second half to complete their largest comeback victory of the season.


Jags juniors Abrea Harris scored her Augusta career-high 28 points. She added five rebounds and four steals. Seniors Breonna O'Conner and Kayla Lovett each scored 13 points, with O'Conner adding nine boards and Lovett four boards, three assists, and three steals.


Augusta shot 41.4 percent from the floor, 40.0 percent from three-point land, and 73.7 percent from the free-throw line. FSU shot strong across the court with a 51.7 field-goal range and 60 from the three line and 70 at the charity stripe.


FSU's Chinwendu Maduegbunam led the Broncos with 25 points and 10 rebounds. Tajah Clark and Breona Jones each had 16 in the loss. Fayetteville outrebounded Augusta 44-31, but the Jags' bench outscored the Broncos 41-0.


The game opened back and forth in the first period with the Broncos taking a one basket lead at the first media timeout. A three pointer from Tajah Clark lifted FSU up by nine with 1:50 in the first period and they went on a 16-0 run to build a large first-half lead.


Clark was 3-for-3 on three pointers in the first half as Fayetteville took halftime on top 44-30. The Jags trailed by 21 in the first half due in large part to the Broncos shooting 62.1 percent from the floor and Augusta 35.3 percent.


FSU scored three-straight baskets to lead 52-30, but Abrea Harris canned a pair of jumpers to end the run. Harris had four points in the first half and came alive in the third period with 10 points. Jags junior Joshlyn Belcher hit a corner three and Harris beat the third-period buzzer for a 59-45 score.


Down by 14 to begin the final 10 minutes, the Jags found Harris again in the paint. The momentum shifted too Augusta's favor when Belcher sunk her second three pointer with 8:30 to play that made it a 10-point game.


O'Conner found Harris on the perimeter and she drilled it for a seven-point game. FSU jumped back up by 10, but Augusta completed back-to-back and-one plays when O'Conner and Harris made jumpers and the free throw after being fouled.


Four free throws from Augusta made it a three-point contest with under 2:30 to go in the game. Down 73-30, the Jags forced two turnovers and found Belcher for a game-tying three pointer. The Broncos fouled Harris with five seconds left and she made one at the charity stripe for a 76-75 advantage.


Peach Belt Conference play continues for the Jags on Monday, Jan. 2 at UNC Pembroke in Pembroke, N.C., for a 5:30 p.m. tipoff. The Augusta men follow at 7:30 p.m. against the UNCP Braves.


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