Nov. 16, 2014
THE FLATS – The Georgia Tech women’s basketball team (2-0) used a strong offensive output to defeat Morgan State (0-2), 105-76, at McCamish Pavilion on Sunday afternoon.
“We can score the basketball, there’s no doubt about it and we have several capable scorers, but we have to be able to defend better than what we have,” head coach MaChelle Joseph said. “I know that’s a sign of a young team and it’s a journey. We have to continue to work on our defense. For the most part, I thought that we shared the basketball and did a great job on the offensive end getting post’s touches.”
During the first-ever meeting between the two teams, the Yellow Jackets held the advantage on both the scoreboard and on the boards, out-rebounding the Bears, 50-22. Junior Roddreka Rogers led the way on the boards, grabbing a career-high 17 rebounds during her second-straight double-double. Rogers scored 17 points on 7-for-9 shooting against Morgan State during her seventh career double-double.
“I think one of the things we have to do is start matching Roddreka Rogers’ intensity,” Joseph said. “The way she plays on both ends of the floor and her relentlessness on the boards; we have to take on her persona. That’s the defensive team we have to become.”
The Yellow Jackets have averaged 98.5 points per game on their way to their eighth 2-0 start under Joseph. The last time Tech scored 100 points was against rv/rv UTEP on Dec. 20, 2013. The is the first time Georgia Tech has scored at least 105 points since they put 111 points on the scoreboard against Morris Brown in 2002.
Junior Aaliyah Whiteside led the scoring effort by setting a new career-high with 26 points against Morgan State. It was her third career game scoring 20 points or more. Sophomore Kaela Davis hit the 20 point mark for the 15th time in her career, scoring 22 points, grabbing nine rebounds and recording a team-high five assists. Davis has scored in double-figures for 14 straight games.
The Yellow Jackets continued their sharp shooting from behind the 3-point line, making nine 3-pointers against the Bears. Senior Sydney Wallace went 4-for-5 from behind the arc on her way to 14 points. Wallace’s 148 career made 3-pointers ranks sixth in Georgia Tech history. Freshman Zaire O’Neil recorded her second-straight double-figure game scoring 13 points and recording six rebounds.
During the first half, Whiteside, Wallace and Davis all scored in double-figures while junior Roddreka Rogers pulled down an impressive 11 rebounds. The Yellow Jackets’ continued it’s on point shooting from behind the arc, making six 3-pointers in the first half.
Morgan State kept the score close in the beginning of the first half, pulling within five points of Tech’s 26-21 lead halfway through the first frame but the Yellow Jackets strung together seven-straight points to go ahead, 33-21. The Yellow Jackets would go on a 14-4 run to close out the first half and take a 60-42 lead into the locker room. Whiteside scored seven of her 13 first-half points during the run that last 4:11.
Davis went on a 6-0 run against the Bears, pulling Tech ahead 69-46 at 17:17 in the second half. The Yellow Jackets forced three straight turnovers from Morgan State in a minute span which helped them take a 79-56 lead with 11:44 left in the game. The Jackets took its largest lead of the night of 31 points with 7:36 remaining when O’Neil hit a jumper in the paint to put Tech ahead, 93-62.
The Yellow Jackets continue a four-game homestand by hosting two in-state opponents next week. Georgia Tech hosts Kennesaw State on Wednesday at 7 p.m. before welcoming Georgia on Sunday, Nov. 23 at 2 p.m. Georgia Tech students are welcome to come celebrate Thanksgiving early and enjoy a pre-game turkey feast prior to the Georgia game while supplies last. As always, kids get in free on Sundays and can enjoy a Kids Zone one hour prior to the game that features inflatables, a DJ and more.
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