MACON, Ga. - Anthony White Jr. led all scorers with 29 points on a career night and Bud Thomas added 18 as Mercer advanced to the semifinals of the 2014 Atlantic Sun Men's Basketball Championship with an 85-64 victory against Jacksonville.
The 2014 A-Sun Player of the Year, Langston Hall, also made a bid to become the Atlantic Sun career assist record holder in the game, dishing out 10 assists to tie the record (613) set by Napolean Byrdsong of Centenary (1979-83). Many of Hall's assists went to jump shooters knocking down three-pointers, as the Bears shot 47 percent from long range. Thomas, one of three Bears with at least 1,000 career points, was six-for-10 from three-point range for 18 points along with nine rebounds. The 2014 A-Sun Scholar-Athlete of the Year Jakob Gollon also added 10 points and Hall contributed three points to his 10 assists.
The loss extended Jacksonville's quarterfinal drought, as the Dolphins' last win in the A-Sun Championship Quarterfinals came on March 3, 2010, a 76-69 victory against North Florida.
Three Dolphins finished in double digits, led by Vince Martin with 17 points. Jarvis Haywood, who averaged 19.8 points per game in his four previous games, added 15 and Keith McDougald added 10. McDougald entered the game with 1,182 career points and now sits at 92nd in A-Sun history in career points. Javon Dawson showed why he ranked as one of the top five rebounders in the league, tying for the game-high in rebounds with nine, nearly three above his average of 6.8.
Hawkins Arena remained unkind to visitors, as the Bears won their 15th game at Hawkins Arena this season and their 31st in the last two years to only a pair of losses over the same stretch. Mercer now hosts No. 3 USC Upstate at 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 6, at Hawkins Arena.