Starting Five: Nebraska (6-0) at Georgia Tech (4-2)

Nov. 29, 2011

By Jon Cooper
Sting Daily

Georgia Tech gets back on the floor following a tough weekend in San Juan, Puerto Rico, hosting their game in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, against Nebraska at the Arena at Gwinnett. Tip-off is at 7:00 p.m.

The Jackets lost to No. 13 Rutgers, then No. 18 Green Bay in overtime in the San Juan Shootout. Tyaunna Marshall was named to the All-Tournament Team, scoring 31 points and grabbing 13 rebounds, while Sasha Goodlett had a solid bounce-back game on Saturday in the weekend finale, scoring a game-high 20 points. In the Green Bay game, Tech shot 53.9 percent in regulation, but saw the Phoenix hit a game-tying three-pointer with two seconds remaining, then fell in overtime.

The unbeaten Cornhuskers, who are tied for second in the Big Ten, look to complete a perfect three-game road trip. They recorded a pair of wins over the weekend in Tallahassee, handling Florida A&M, then, on Sunday, using a late 9-1 run to rally from a 13-point second-half deficit and knock off home-standing and 24th-ranked Florida State, 66-63. Point guard Lindsey Moore had a team-high 15, including four late free throws to seal the game.

Tech is 1-0 all-time against the Nebraska, beating them, 73-68, in the 1992 National Women’s Invitational Tournament, on the way to winning the tournament. Coincidentally, Tech’s previous game in that tournament came against Green Bay, their only previous meeting with them. In ’92, the Jackets knocked off the Phoenix, 78-77.

Tonight’s game can be heard on WREK, 91.1 FM or online at www.WREK.org. Richard Musterer calls the action with Michele Van Gorp. It can be streamed on Ramblinwreck.com, where fans also can get live stats.

Now, the Starting Five for tonight’s game.

Drive For Five: Georgia Tech head Coach MaChelle Joseph may be a Purdue University alumna and a member of the Purdue Intercollegiate Athletics Hall of Fame (Class of 2010), but her loyalty to the Big Ten ends there. So far, Joseph’s teams are 4-0 in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge. Tech edged Northwestern, 67-63, last year at Alexander Memorial Coliseum, beat Penn State, 64-60, at State College in 2009, topped Michigan State, 70-57, in 2008, and knocked off Iowa, 76-57, in Tech’s inaugural game in Iowa City. This is obviously Nebraska’s first go-round in the Challenge, as this is the Huskers’ debut season in the Big Ten.

Deja Vu?: While the Yellow Jackets are disappointed about last weekend’s losses in San Juan against ranked teams Rutgers and Green Bay, they shouldn’t get too down. In fact, if history is any indication, the weekend may be the start of big things. Last season, Tech went to St. Thomas for the U.S. Virgin Islands Paradise Jam, where they lost to No. 12 Georgetown and No. 4 Tennessee. They proceeded to go on a 13-game winning streak, including a 67-63 home win against Northwestern in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge.

Sureshot Sasha: Senior center Sasha Goodlett had one of the best shooting games of her career Saturday against Green Bay, when she hit seven of her eight field goal attempts. It was a nice bounce back from the previous game against Rutgers, where she shot 1-for-9. To show what an aberration that was, subtract that game, and Goodlett is shooting a sizzling .615 from the floor (24-for-39) and hasn’t shot below 50 percent in any game. That includes an 8-for-15 performance against Old Dominion (one field goal off her career high). Green Bay marked the second time that Goodlett hit at least seven field goals in a game. She’s had three such games in each of her first three seasons but none of them had ever come before Dec. 29. Goodlett also is shooting a career-best 66.7 percent from the foul line (12-for-18). She’s a career 65.1 shooter from the stripe.

Heating Up: Ty Marshall is taking to the “go-to” role the way Joseph expected heading into the season. Since being held to single-digit scoring in the season-opener — she only played 15 minutes — Marshall has hit for double-digits in each of Tech’s last five games, leading or sharing the team lead in scoring in all but one of them. The exception was Saturday against Green Bay, when she had 19, second behind Goodlett who had 20. Over the last five games, she’s shooting 47.2 percent from the floor. Marshall was the only Yellow Jacket with more than two field goals against Rutgers, when Tech shot only 21.4 percent.

Pulling ’em Down: Marshall also is hitting the boards. She grabbed a season-high nine caroms Saturday against the Phoenix, including five off the offensive glass. Both are season highs for Marshall. The nine rebounds are second-most by a Yellow Jacket this season (Danielle Hamilton-Carter grabbed 10 against Kennesaw State), while the five offensive rebounds are a team-season-high. Saturday marked the third game this season she’s pulled down five offensive rebounds. Three players have one four offensive-rebound-game — Jasmine Blain (vs. Alabama State), Chelsea Regins (vs. Old Dominion) and Goodlett (vs. Rutgers) each had four O-Rebound games.

The Sixth Man: Point guard Dawnn Maye had her third game of at least six assists on Saturday against Green Bay in Tech’s final game in the San Juan Shootout. Maye recorded six assists but also committed a career-high-tying six turnovers — she had seven turnovers in her previous five games. She still has a nearly 2:1 assist-to-turnover ratio, with 25 A’s against 13 TO’s.

TECH LEADING SCORER: Tyaunna Marshall, 14.8 ppg
TECH LEADING REBOUNDER: Tyaunna Marshall, 6.0 rpg

NEBRASKA LEADING SCORER: Jordan Hooper, 18.2 ppg
NEBRASKA LEADING REBOUNDER: Jordan Hooper, 9.0 rpg

TECH SCORING: 75.7 ppg
OPPONENT: 55.5 ppg

NEBRASKA SCORING: 78.3 ppg
OPPONENT: 53.8 ppg

NEBRASKA PLAYER TO WATCH: Lindsey Moore – The junior point guard makes the Huskers go. Moore leads the Big Ten in assists (7.0 apg), and assist-to-turnover ratio (3.2-1) as well as steals (2.8 spg). She also can shoot, ranking sixth in the conference in field goal percentage (.500) and 15th in three-point field goal percentage (.348). Moore is money at the end of games, shooting 76.0 percent from the foul line.

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