Jan. 18—THOMASVILLE- The Thomas University men's basketball team (8-9, 6-4 SSAC) produced a dominant second half of play to secure a victory over the Lions of Paine College (4-10, 0-0) on Wednesday evening.
In the first three minutes of play, the Lions would strike first in the form of a 8-0 run. The Night Hawks would then come storming back to produce a 7-0 run of their own, capped by a Tyson Anderson three pointer that would cut the deficit to one. Four minutes later, the Night Hawks would even the score at 12 a piece courtesy of a Noah Lattin three-point play. However, the Lions would continuously provide an answer following each successful Night Hawk possession. Jailin Lee would demonstrate consistency to keep the Night Hawks in contention. Lee would connect on a deep, contested three pointer to even the score at 22 a piece with just over four minutes remaining in the half. Then, less than a minute later, Lee would drain a tough jumper to even the score once more, 24-24. On their next possession, the Night Hawks would take their first lead of the contest, 27-26, on an Andre Lightbourne three pointer. From there, Jarvis Brown would lead a 9-0 Thomas run by draining two three pointers on consecutive possessions. Heading into the break, the Night Hawks would hold a 35-28 lead.
In the first half of play, the Night Hawks would shoot 41% from the field, 42% from behind the arc, and 100% from the free throw line. Four different Night Hawks would combine to produce six first half three pointers. Brown would lead the way with 12 points.
The second half of play would begin much like the first. The Lions would go on a quick 9-0 run to take the lead, 37-35. Lee would provide the answer for the Night Hawks once again, by capitalizing on a tough layup and a three pointer on consecutive possessions to regain the lead, 40-37. From there, the Night Hawks would have tremendous success from behind the arc to remain in control of the lead for the remainder of the contest. At the eight minute mark, the Night Hawks would begin a 15-2 run powered by the offensive production of Keon Williams and Anderson to increase Thomas' lead to 71-53 with five minutes remaining in regulation. The Night Hawks would lead by as much as 20 points in the second half, and the Lions would not be able to recover. Thomas would take the victory, 80-65.
Anderson would sink four three pointers and remain perfect from the free throw line (6-6), to lead all Night Hawks with 18 points. Lee and Brown would follow closely behind with 17 points a piece. Lightbourne would shoot 80% from behind the arc to add 12 points. Jones would lead the Night Hawks in assists (5), and rebounds (6). Williams would contribute 9 points and 3 assists. As a team, the Night Hawks would shoot 45% from the field and 51% from beyond the arc.