Georgia State begins homestand on Monday against Texas State

ATLANTA — Georgia State will begin a three-game home-stand and look to start a new winning streak when Texas State comes to the Sports Arena on Monday night in a game originally scheduled for last Thursday, but postponed due to the snow and ice storm in Atlanta.

The Panthers are undefeated at home this season and will face the Bobcats in the second game of a doubleheader at approximately 7:30 p.m.

Monday’s contest can also be heard live on 1340 The Fan 3 and WRAS-FM 88.5, with Dave Cohen, now in his 31st year as the Voice of the Panthers, being joined by former Panther Rodney “Truck” Turner and 680 The Fan’s Brandon Leak. Live statistics, PantherVision HD and live audio will be available at and on most mobile devices.

Georgia State (17-7, 10-1 Sun Belt) saw its school-record 14-game win streak come to an end on Saturday night in Troy as the Panthers fell 85-81. The streak was the sixth-longest in the country at the time and also ended a seven-game road win streak which was tied for the longest in program history.

The Panthers will be looking for their 10th-straight at home on Monday, which would be tied for the second-longest streak in program history.

Texas State (7-17, 3-8 Sun Belt) fell at UT Arlington 69-62 on Saturday night. The Bobcats are led by Joel Wright who is averaging 14.9 points and 6.2 rebounds per game. It will be the first of two meetings in the next two weeks for GSU and Texas State.

“We were obviously disappointed by the loss on Saturday night, but the good thing is that we get a chance to redeem ourselves pretty quickly with this game on Monday,” head coach Ron Hunter said. “Our students and fans have given us a great home court advantage this year and after a tough loss, I know that they will be out in full force to support us as we look to start a new streak.”

Georgia State enters the contest No. 3 in the country in fewest turnovers per game, giving up just 8.7 per game and has the fifth-best turnover margin (5.8) in the NCAA. The Panthers are also sixth in the nation in assist/turnover ratio (1.58) and third in free throw percentage making 77.8-percent from the line in the latest rankings.

Sophomore R.J. Hunter became the 18th Panther in program history to reach the 1,000-point plateau on Saturday, doing it in just 55 games, the second-quickest in team history. Hunter enters play with 1,011 points, just one-point behind Chris Collier for 17th on the all-time list.

Hunter is now the second starter in the line-up with 1,000 career points and by the end of the week, could be joined by two of his teammates. Senior Devonta White accomplished the feat last year and currently stands at 1,272 points, fifth most in program history. Redshirt-junior Ryan Harrow, in his first season at Georgia State is close behind at 984 points. Senior Manny Atkins has scored 978 for his career between GSU and Virginia Tech.

Hunter leads the Panthers in scoring, averaging 20.2 points per game, second-best in the Sun Belt.  Only six Panthers in program history have averaged 20 or more points in a season, the last coming ten years ago.

The sophomore is shooting 87.8-percent from the free throw line this season, currently No. 22 in the NCAA, and on pace to break the school-record of 87.6-percent held by Matt O’Brien.

Hunter is second in the league in steals (1.9) and 3-pointers made per game (3.4). He has hit a team-best 83 3-pointers, 12th in the NCAA and tied for the fourth most in program history and just 11 shy of the school-record.

Harrow is adding 17.8 points per game, fifth in the Sun Belt. He has scored 20 or more points in 12 of the Panthers’ 24 games. The Kentucky-transfer is dishing out 4.5 assists per game, first on the team and third in the Sun Belt. Harrow is second in the Sun Belt with a 2.5 assist/turnover ratio, only behind teammate Devonta White.

White is averaging 11.3 points per game and is shooting 81.1-percent from the free throw line, seventh in the conference, averaging 4.4 assists per game, fourth in the Sun Belt. He is first in the league with a 2.8 assist/turnover ratio, which ranks No. 32 in the NCAA.

Atkins is averaging 13.6 points and 5.8 rebounds per game. One of the top 3-point shooters in the league, the senior is shooting 48.1-percent from the floor and making 44.4-percent from 3-point range, knocking down 2.0 3s per game, both among the top-10 in the conference. He is on pace to be the second-best 3-point shooter in program history, currently making 42.8-percent from behind the arc for his career.

Redshirt-junior Curtis Washington rounds out the starting line-up. Washington is averaging 8.0 points and 5.9 rebounds per game. He leads the Sun Belt making 66.1-percent from the floor and is second averaging 2.4 blocked shots per game.

Georgia State is averaging 79.3 points per game, second in the Sun Belt. The Panthers lead the conference in scoring margin, free throw percentage, field goal percentage, 3-point percentage, blocked shots, steals, turnover margin and assist/turnover ratio.

Offensively, GSU is shooting 47.3-percent from the floor and 38.7-percent from 3-point range, making 77.4-percent from the free throw line. Four Panthers are ranked in the top-eight in free-throw percentage in the Sun Belt.

Following Monday night’s game, Georgia State will continue its home-stand on Thursday facing UL Monroe in the Sports Arena at 7 p.m.

About the author

Special to Express Telegraph

This content is provided by outsider sources and not necessarily written by