Cougars can clinch PBC tournament berth with win

kprice@ledger-enquirer.comFebruary 25, 2014 

Mike Haskey/mhaskey@ledger-enquirer.comColumbus State's DeAngelo Kirkland shoots while being guarded by Armstrong Atlantic's Montel Baines during a game in January.


The Columbus State Cougars have an opportunity Wednesday night to clinch a berth in the upcoming Peach Belt Conference tournament.

The Cougars have a one-game lead over Clayton State for the final berth in the tournament from the Western Division. With a win tonight and a Clayton State loss against Young Harris would give CSU a two-game lead with just one left to play.

However, if those results are reversed, then the two teams would be tied. CSU plays at Clayton State on Saturday.

The Cougars (13-11, 7-10) lost their earlier meeting with North Georgia, 89-82.

Meanwhile, the Lady Cougars are still seeking the regular-season title and the No. 1 seed that goes along with it.

CSU (18-5, 13-4) are in a three-way tie for second with North Georgia (19-5, 13-4) and Young Harris (18-6, 13-4). All are a game behind Clayton State.

The Lady Cougars lost 78-73 to No. 22 North Georgia earlier this month.

But CSU has not lost since then, winning four straight.

That loss is the only blemish on CSU's record in its past 10 games.

North Georgia will still be without former National Player of the Year Jaymee Carnes, who played in just 10 games this season before suffering a season-ending injury.

The Lady Saints have gone 10-4 after a 9-1 start.

CSU's Tae Smith has averaged 21 points per game in the past three contests. She shot 51.1 percent from the floor in those games.

CSU made it into the NCAA Southeast Region poll last week at No. 5. Eight teams from the region will be selected for the NCAA tournament.

Columbus State's games at North Georgia were originally scheduled for Jan. 29, but they were postponed due to winter storms that day.

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