Feb. 28, 2013
THE FLATS – Georgia Tech won its fourth straight game and its sixth in the last eight outings when the Yellow Jackets routed the Clemson Lady Tigers, 74-48, Thursday night at McCamish Pavilion in the final home game of the regular season.
It was the eighth straight win for Tech (14-14, 7-10 ACC) over Clemson (9-19, 5-12 ACC) and the 15th win in the last 16 outings versus the Lady Tigers.
Freshman Brittany Jackson led the Yellow Jackets with 22 points in just 15 minutes of play, including four 3-pointers. It is the fifth time this season Jackson has scored at least 20 points. Classmates Aaliyah Whiteside added 15 points and Roddreka Rogers pulled down 11 rebounds. For Rogers, it is the fourth straight game with double digit boards. Tyaunna Marshall finished with 10 points, five rebounds, five assists and two steals in 24 minutes.
“I think one of the best decisions we’ve made as a staff was to go with our young kids and develop them,” head coach MaChelle Joseph said. “We just said we’re going to take it on the chin right now, but we know down the road we’re going to be a pretty good basketball team. I think we’ve shown improvement throughout the course of the season. I really feel like we’re playing our best basketball right now and just starting to come into our own.
“Every one of these freshmen has an opportunity to make an impact on this program,” Joseph added. “Anyone who can score 22 points in 15 minutes is a special player. I’ve really been after her [Jackson] to take more shots and look for her offensive game because that’s what she brings to the table. Today she did that.”
Clemson’s Quinyotta Pettaway forced the first and only tie of the game with a layup at the 13:10 mark of the first half. From there, Georgia Tech went on 14-0 run over the next five minutes, capped by a Whiteside 3-pointer, to take a 25-11 lead with eight minutes remaining in the opening period.
After five quick points from Clemson, the Jackets put together a 20-1 run to end the half and took a 45-17 advantage into the halftime break.
Clemson scored the first five points of the second half but would only get four points over the next eight minutes as Tech extended its lead to 60-26. The Jackets would lead by no less than 26 the rest of the way.
“I think we’re really in a good place, we’ve hit our stride, feel like we have a lot of balance now,” Joseph said. “We’re getting a lot of scoring and rebounding from a lot of different people. We’re not one dimensional, we don’t have to depend on one player. I feel like across the board we’re getting a good balance offensively. And defensively, we’ve finally learned our system. We’re not giving in and breaking down as much as we were early in the season. I’m really pleased with where we are. I think we’ve done a good job of getting these freshmen on board and to a place where they are contributing and making an impact in the ACC.”
Georgia Tech will travel to the Northeast for its regular season finale and the only meeting this year with Boston College at noon on Sunday, March 3, at Conte Forum in Chestnut Hill, Mass. The ACC Tournament will begin Thursday, March 7, at the Greensboro (N.C.) Coliseum.
Fans are encouraged to follow Georgia Tech women’s basketball on Twitter, @GTWBB, and like the Yellow Jackets on Facebook, GTWomensBasketball, for an inside look at the program.