Hawks sweep weekend road games, continue rise in NJCAA poll

The South Georgia State College Hawks are now ranked No. 13 in the latest NJCAA Top 25 poll thanks to two, last-second conference road wins over the holiday weekend.

Leading by nine points with two minutes left in regulation, the Hawks (19-1, 8-0) survived a furious comeback by the Central Georgia Tech Titans Saturday afternoon in Macon to win, 79-77.

Jovante’ Spivey led the Hawks with 27 points, while Daniel Peace had 18 points, six assists, and five steals.  Cody Helgeland and JeVaughn Sanchez each finished with 11 points, and Demontrez Austin had seven points and 11 rebounds.

Head coach Cory Baldwin said his team’s inside game and free throw shooting were the keys to victory.

“I thought we did a good job of getting the ball to the paint during the game, and that ultimately gave us the lead,” he said.  “We also shot 72 percent from the free throw line, which was great.”

The Hawks traveled to Atlanta Metro Monday night and once again faced a last-second scenario.  Sanchez’s tip-in, with 17 seconds left in regulation, proved to be the game-winner as SGSC escaped with a 72-70 win.

“They (Atlanta Metro) controlled the tempo and the game all night.  We just kept hanging around and made some big shots late to pull it out,” said Baldwin.  “It was definitely a team win.  Back-to-back conference road wins shows we are mentally tough as a team.”

The duo of Spivey and Peace led the Hawks against Atlanta Metro.  Spivey finished with 27 points, and Peace had 13 points, nine assists, seven steals, and four rebounds.  Helgeland rounded out the top scorers with 10 points.

The Hawks’ current winning streak now stands at 14 games and keeps them atop the GCAA Conference.  With ten regular season games remaining, Baldwin said it’s important that his team step up its game.

“With 10 games left, now is when we must grow the most,” he said.

The 10-game homestretch begins this Saturday afternoon at home when the Hawks host Gordon State at 4 p.m.  Gordon is currently in third place in the GCAA.

General admission to all regular season home games is five dollars with children five and under admitted free.