Columbus State University

Jackson, Baker lead Cougars to 84-72 win over Flagler

One player was benched for a five-minute stretch, while another was suspended for a game.

Both responded the way Columbus State men's coach Robert Moore hoped in leading the Cougars to a 84-72 win over Flagler on Wednesday night at the Lumpkin Center.

Moore took JaCori Payne out of the game against Flagler midway through the second half after he passed up an open shot for a drive that resulted in a missed layup.

Payne went back into the game after Flagler had cut CSU's lead to eight, 68-60. After the Saints got two points closer, Payne drained a 3-pointer that ended a 9-0 run by Flagler.

After Flagler hit a pair of free throws, Payne hit a 3-pointer off an inbounds play as the shot clock neared zero. Payne ended up with 14 points, all in the second half.

"I told him 'Jacori, you are here to knock down open shots.'" Moore said. "He responded well coming back in the game and knocking down those two 3s."

Brent Jackson was suspended for Sunday's game at Young Harris. He did not return to the starting lineup against Flagler, but he came off the bench and scored 18 of his 24 points in the first half.

"I think he was a little over-excited coming off suspension," Moore said. "Sometimes guys get like that. I think he made plays, but you could tell he was happy to be back.

"He played with a lot of energy and enthusiasm. That really helped us because our guys came out a little sluggish. Down 8-0, Brent came off the bench and sparked us. That is what he is supposed to do."

Cam Baker tied Jackson for the team high with 24 points.

Matt Clark led Flagler with 18.

CSU (14-4, 8-3 Peach Belt Conference) stayed one game behind Young Harris for the lead in the West Division. CSU is tied with Montevallo for second place.

The Cougars play at Georgia Southwestern on Saturday.

FLAGLER (6-13, 2-9 PBC)

Matt Clark 5-12 5-6 18; Keith Gray 6-12 5-6 17; Keshaun Hamilton 3-7 4-6 10; Vaughn McCall 4-9 0-0 10; Nick Grier 3-6 0-1 7; Ben Bobbitt 2-7 0-0 5; Jeffercy Jean 1-1 1-2 3; Austin Howard 0-0 2-4 2. Totals 24-54 17-25 72.

COLUMBUS STATE (14-4, 8-3 PBC)

Brent Jackson 7-16 6-9 24; Cam Baker 9-17 4-6 24; JaCori Payne 4-9 3-4 14; Brentine Taylor 3-4 2-4 8; Arben Camaj 3-7 0-0 7; DeMarcus McVay 2-3 1-2 5; Matthias Sigurdarson 1-3 0-0 2; Markis Boyd 0-0 0-0 0; Darren Daniel 0-0 0-0 0; Demetres Abrams 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 29-59 16-25 84.

Halftime: CSU 40-35.

3-point goals--Flagler 7-20 (Matt Clark 3-7; Vaughn McCall 2-6; Ben Bobbitt 1-4; Nick Grier 1-1; Keshaun Hamilton 0-2), Columbus State 10-21 (Brent Jackson 4-9; JaCori Payne 3-4; Cam Baker 2-5; Arben Camaj 1-1; Matthias Sigurdarson 0-2). Fouled out--Flagler-Austin Howard, Columbus State-None. Rebounds--Flagler 39 (Keshaun Hamilton 9), Columbus State 30 (DeMarcus McVay 6; Brentine Taylor 6). Assists--Flagler 9 (Keshaun Hamilton 3; Austin Howard 3), Columbus State 15 (Cam Baker 9). Total fouls--Flagler 22, Columbus State 23. Technical fouls--Flagler-None, Columbus State-None. A-782

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