THE FLATS — Zaire O’Neil posted a new career-high in scoring with 28 points, but it was not enough as Georgia Tech women’s basketball dropped a tough 75-67 decision to No. 17 NC State in overtime Thursday night.
“We are disappointed we weren’t able to finish it at the end,” stated head coach MaChelle Joseph. “It’s really tough when our starters are on the bench in the first half. I felt like we had good momentum and came out strong. We got down, but battled back and showed a lot of character and a lot of resilience bouncing back, but we have to have more than one person scoring. We need consistency across the board.”
How It Happened
Tech raced out to a 12-3 lead to open the first quarter, forcing NC State to burn a timeout with less than four minutes expired in the game. But the Wolfpack answered with a 10-2 spurt to slice the score to 14-13 with 2:55 left in the first. The Jackets were able to push their lead back out to six with a three-pointer from Antonia Peresson and a fast break from Kaylan Pugh, but the Wolfpack would trim it to three points at the first intermission. Shaking off a slow start to the second quarter, Tech outscored NCSU 12-5 to open a 33-32 advantage with 1:51 left in the half. But the Wolfpack held the Jackets scoreless the remainder of the half and posted nine unanswered points for a 33-32 halftime score.
Miah Spencer opened the second half hitting a triple to give NCSU its first lead of the game as NCSU expanded its lead to 48-38, outscoring Tech 16-5, before the Jackets’ offense ignited. Tech held the Wolfpack scoreless over the final 3:56 of the third quarter, putting up 10 unanswered points to leave the game tied at 48-48 entering the final frame.
Tech held NC State scoreless over a four minute span across the third and fourth quarters, opening a 52-48 lead. The Jackets would push their lead out to 58-53 with 4:10 left to play, but Dominique Wilson posted eight unanswered points to return the lead to NC State with less than a minute on the clock. O’Neil would knot the score with two free throws to force overtime. NC State outscored Tech 14-6 and was 7-of-9 from the charity stripe in the extra period to seal the win.
* Tech dropped to 14-10 overall and 3-8 in ACC play with the loss
* Zaire O’Neil recorded her third straight game with 20+ points, posting a new career-high with 28 points
* O’Neil was 10-of-16 from the floor and 8-of-10 at the free throw line
* Imani Tilford also notched double-figures, finishing with 12 points
*NC State finished 20-of-27 from the free throw line and 24-of-68 from the field for a 35.3 percent efficiency
* The Jackets shot 36.2 percent (25-69) from the field and outscored the Wolfpack in the paint 44-32
Up next, the Jackets visit No. 7 Notre Dame on Sunday for a 2 p.m. tip on RSN, Fox Sports South locally in Atlanta.