White leads Georgia State to win

Georgia State broke a four-game losing streak with a 71-54 victory over Young Harris at the Sports Arena on Wednesday.

In a good sign for the Panthers as the schedule begins to toughen up again, Devonta White scored 16 points to lead the Panthers (3-5). He also added three rebounds, two assists and a steal. He hit six of his nine shots.

Curtis Washington added 17 points and eight rebounds as the Mountain Lions had no one who could match up with Georgia State’s 6-foot, 9-inch center.

But the story was White, who had struggled in the four-game losing streak, averaging just 3.5 points and shooting 22.7 percent. The on-the-ball aggressiveness he showed in the previous three years was also missing; he had just three steals during the streak.

Lacking White’s spark, the Panthers had lost their previous four games by an average of 7.8 points. The defeats came in myriad ways. They missed crucial free throws and were outrebounded in a 61-60 loss to FlU. They couldn’t defend 3-pointers against Elon (90-85), couldn’t defend or shoot 3’s against Canisius (79-71) and were outmuscled by Alabama (75-58).

So, even though Young Harris is a Division II school, Wednesday’s game had the potential to be problematic for the Panthers because the Mountain Lions are one of the highest-scoring Division II teams, averaging 94.7 points per game. Seven of their players were averaging at least 11 points per game.

But the Panthers’ defense found solutions, at least for one night, against Young Harris. The Mountain Lions were held to 33.3-percent shooting and just two players scored at least 12 points.

Young Harris got to within 17-15 with 8:39 left in the first half. But the Panthers went on an 8-0 run to open a 25-15 lead. Washington scored three points and White added four more in the stretch.

Behind 10 from White, the Panthers held a 34-22 lead at halftime.

Georgia State’s lead in the second half twice got cut to nine, the last time on a Herdie Lawrence 3-pointer with 12:44 left, but that’s as close as Young Harris would get.

The Panthers are at Southern Miss on Saturday.

Etc.

Isaiah Dennis, a freshman guard from Eagle’s Landing High School, may redshirt this year because of a foot injury that’s not healing properly, Hunter said. Dennis has played in two games, totaling five minutes. … Young Harris received $2,000 to play Georgia State.