SAVANNAH, Ga. - Armstrong State University junior Mercedes Jenkins' layup with 0.3 seconds left snapped a 59-all tie to give the Pirates a 61-59 Peach Belt Conference women's basketball victory over visiting USC Aiken on Wednesday afternoon at Alumni Arena.
The buzzer-beating win halts a four-game slide for the Pirates, who improve to 7-10 overall and 3-5 in the PBC with the win. USC Aiken falls to 10-8 overall and 6-3 in the league with the loss. Armstrong State returns to action on Saturday, traveling to Lander for a 1:30 p.m. Peach Belt Conference contest against the Bearcats in Greenwood, S.C.
The Pirates led by four at halftime, 34-30, and stretched that lead to eight early in the second half, but USC Aiken held the Pirates scoreless for a four and a half minute stretch midway through the fourth quarter to take a 59-54 lead with 4:21 left in the contest.
A three-pointer by junior Machala Raymonville halted the scoreless stretch with 3:09 left, then Jenkins made a layup with 45 seconds left to tie the game at 59-all.
USC Aiken's Emily Waters missed a short jumper with 18 seconds left, and the Pirates secured the rebound. Jenkins brought the ball up the floor, held it between the circles until four seconds left on the clock, then drove the right lane and hit the layup with 0.3 seconds left to give the Pirates the two-point lead. USC Aiken called time out and advanced the ball to the frontcourt, but the inbounds pass was deflected by the Pirates and time ran out.
Senior Jessica Doyle led the Pirates offensively with 16 points, while Raymonville finished with 12 points. Jenkins had seven points, seven assists and eight rebounds in the all-around effort for Armstrong State.
USC Aiken was led by Kwajelin Farrar's 16 points and Waters' 10 points.