March 20, 2011
Fans are always encouraged to follow us on Twitter, @GTWBB, for instant updates and like us on Facebook, GTWomensBasketball, for a view inside the program. A new addition to our tournament coverage for this year will be a live, interactive in-game blog with a member of the RamblinWreck.com staff from courtside at St. John Arena.
In their NCAA Tournament opener, the fifth-seeded Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets traveled to the Buckeye State to face the 12th-seeded Bowling Green Falcons, who were making the short trip south to Columbus. The Yellow Jackets prevailed, 69-58, and will now face the fourth-seeded and host Ohio State Buckeyes in the second round on Monday, March 21. The Jackets and Buckeyes will tip-off at 7:20 p.m. on ESPN2 and ESPN3.com, marking the first ever meeting between Georgia Tech and Ohio State.
Leading Georgia Tech to only its third NCAA Tournament first round win was junior center Sasha Goodlett who tossed in a season-high 19 points and had a basket that would have tied her career high go half way down before coming out in the second half. Freshman Tyaunna Marshall, playing in her first NCAA Tournament game, came off the bench and was superb again. The rookie from Upper Marlboro, Md., scored 12 points, and has finished in double digits in her four career postseason games. Senior Alex Montgomery continues to do it all for the Jackets as she notched her 12th career double-double with 14 points and 11 rebounds.
Ohio State advanced to the second round with an 80-69 win over 13th-seeded UCF. The Buckeyes were led by four-time Big Ten Player of the Year and All-American Jantel Lavender who finished with 30 points and 11 rebounds.
The Yellow Jackets and Buckeyes played three common opponents this year: Connecticut, Northwestern and Virginia. Georgia Tech went 2-1 against those three while Ohio State posted a 1-3 record against the trio.
GEORGIA TECH VS. THE BIG TEN
The Yellow Jackets have faced teams from the Big Ten 12 times and own a 9-3 overall record. Three of those games have come in the NCAA Tournament. Georgia Tech’s first ever NCAA game came against Northwestern in Evanston and the Wildcats claimed a 90-62 win. After capturing its first NCAA Tournament win in the 2007 tournament, Georgia Tech dropped a second round contest to Purdue, 76-63 in Minneapolis. The Jackets’ third NCAA game against a Big Ten opponent came two years ago when GT defeated Iowa, 76-62, on the Hawkeyes’ home floor in Iowa City.
OHIO STATE VS. THE ACC
Ohio State is 20-13 all-time against teams currenty in the ACC. The Buckeyes’ most wins have come against Boston College as OSU owns a 7-3 mark against the Eagles. Ohio State has played Virginia seven times and boasts a 6-1 all-time record against the Cavaliers.
Tech head coach MaChelle Joseph is quite familiar with St. John Arena from her playing days at Purdue. While the Yellow Jackets’ leader was only 2-2 all-time in Columbus, she won her last two games at St. John.
HOME SWEET HOME
The Buckeyes are 7-2 in NCAA Tournament games played at St. John Arena, including a 1-0 mark against ACC teams. Ohio State beat Maryland 87-71 in the 1986 Mideast Regional. This year OSU is 13-3 at home.
Ohio State’s senior center Jantel Lavender was named Big Ten Co-Player of the Year this year and became the first men’s or women’s player in conference history to earn the award four times. She is also the first women’s player in the “big six” conferences to win conference player of the year four times.
The strength of the Buckeyes is the dynamic duo of Lavender and junior guard Samantha Prahalis as both rank towards the top of not only the Big Ten, but that national statistical leaders. Lavender’s 22.7 ppg ranks fifth nationally and her 10.9 rpg is good for 15th.