Jets fall to Eastern Florida and Chattahoochee Valley in Jets Classic Tournament

Published 6:45 pm Monday, November 14, 2022

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From Staff Reports

AMERICUS – The nationally ranked South Georgia Technical College Jets (SGTC) suffered two losses in the Jets Classic Tournament in Americus this past weekend.  The 20th ranked Eastern Florida State College Titans secured a 70 – 65 victory in the final seconds of the Friday night game and then Chattahoochee Valley Community College Pirates came away with a 68 – 62 win over the Jets on Saturday.

“These were tough losses,” said South Georgia Technical College Jets head coach Chris Ballauer.  “We were in both games and could have won, but we made some mistakes and failed to execute when it mattered the most.  Now we will regroup, learn from our mistakes and move ahead.”

SGTC was ranked 25th in the nation and 2 – 0 on the season coming into the Jets Classic.  The Jets are now 2 – 2 overall on the young season and trying to regroup before they face the NJCAA’s 8th ranked Chipola College Indians in Marianna, FL on Tuesday, November 15th at 7 p.m. CST.

In the match-up Friday night against Eastern Florida, the two teams were tied at 33 – 33 at the end of the first half.  Eastern Florida was up by seven points (19 – 12) early in the first half, but after six lead changes and four ties, the two teams went into the locker room with 33 each.  Eastern Florida’s AJ Dixon was the only player in double-digits at the half with 10 points.  The Jets Semaj Henderson had nine points.

SGTC sophomore forward Nathan Wilson goes up for a dunk. Wilson scored nine points in the loss to Eastern Florida.
Photo by SGTC Athletics

The two teams continued to battle in the second half with 10 additional lead changes and five more ties.  The game was tied at 61 – 61 with 1:40 left in the game.  Eastern Florida hit a three-point shot with 1:12 to pull ahead 64 – 61.  They stretched that lead to 66 – 62 with 22 seconds remaining.  SGTC cut the lead to 68 – 65 with 11.5 seconds remaining but two free throws with 7.7 seconds in the game put Eastern Florida ahead 70 – 65 and gave the Jets their first loss of the young season.

Sophomore guard Aaron Pitts from Columbus, GA led the Jets in scoring with 19 points.  Sophomore Semaj Henderson from Chicago, IL, was the only other Jet in double digits.  He had 13 points.  Sophomore forward Nathan Wilson wound up with nine points and seven rebounds.  Sophomore Bryce Turner and freshman Deonte Williams both tossed in eight points.  Tim Loud added five points and Justin Evans closed out the scoring with three.

The Jets tried to bounce back after that last second loss to Eastern Florida, but Chattahoochee Valley Community College was determined to get a win after dropping a 60 – 49 decision to East Georgia State College on Friday.  They came out strong in the first half and were up by nine, 41 – 32 after the first twenty minutes of play.  The Jets only hit eight of 23 field goals in that first half and continued to miss the mark in the second half ending the game hitting a total of 16 field goals in 53 attempts for a 30.2% field goal average.

The Jets actually outscored the CVCC Pirates 30 – 27 in the second half but still fell shy in a 68 – 62 decision.  Nathan Wilson stepped up to lead the Jets in scoring in that game with 16 points.  Aaron Pitts followed up with 12 points and Deonte Williams closed out the double-digit scoring with 11 points.

Sophomore Semaj Henderson tossed in nine points and then Ryan Djoussa and Bryce Turner both walked away with seven points.

The Jets travel to Marianna, FL to take on the eighth ranked Chipola College Indians at 7 p.m. CST on Tuesday, November 15th and then head to Florida Gateway College in Lakeland, FL, on November 19th for a 2 p.m. game.  The Jets don’t play at home until November 29th when they host Chipola in the Hangar at 7:30 p.m.

They Lady Jets will play at home on November 25th and 26th when they host the Pete Arrington Thanksgiving Classic.  They will open with Denmark Technical College at 6 p.m. on November 25th and then face Indian River Community College at 3 p.m. on Saturday, November 26th.