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Jackets Host Troy in Season Opener Friday

Nov. 13, 2008

Gametracker | WREK Radio | Game Notes

ATLANTA – The Georgia Tech women’s basketball team, who finished last season with a 22-10 record and its second straight NCAA Tournament appearance, opens up its 2008-09 campaign at home against Troy Friday night in the first game of a men’s and women’s doubleheader. Tip-off is scheduled for 6 p.m. at Alexander Memorial Coliseum

The Yellow Jackets have won 20-plus games and played in the NCAA Tournament in back-to-back seasons for the first time in school history. Tech welcomes back nine letterwinners from last season’s team and adds five freshmen to the mix as they look to make history once again.

The Trojans, who closed out 2007-08 with a 13-18 record and was 5-13 in the Sun Belt, return eight players from last season’s squad. Troy also welcomes seven newcomers to its 2008-09 roster.

Tech fans can listen to Richard Musterer and Kurt Hoyt call the game on WREK radio (91.1 FM/www.wrek.org), Georgia Tech women’s basketball’s flagship station. Live stats will also be available at www.ramblinwreck.com.

Due to the parking restrictions for the men’s game, women’s basketball fans should utilize Peter’s Parking Deck anytime after 5:00 p.m.

Fans can purchase tickets for Friday nights game at Gate 1 of the Coliseum. Tickets are $4 for adults, $2 for children 18 and under. Season tickets are on sale at www.ramblinwreck.com/tickets, or can be purchased on the AMC concourse.

A LOOK AHEAD
The Wreckin’ Crew will host a watch party on Sunday, Nov. 16th when the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets women’s basketball team takes on No. 1 Connecticut. Festivities begin at 1:30pm with tip-off at 2:00pm.

The watch party will be held at the Cheyenne Grille & Sports Bar in Peachtree Battle Shopping Center, located at 2391 Peachtree Road in Atlanta. Prizes will be given away throughout the game and season tickets will be on sale.

Comcast digital cable subscribers in Metro Atlanta can watch the game on channel 499, or make plans now to spend your Sunday afternoon with the Wreckin’ Crew cheering on the Jackets as they take on the top-ranked Huskies. For questions, please call the Women’s Basketball Office at 404.385.4118.

TECH VS. TROY
• Georgia Tech leads the all-time series 1-0 over the Trojans. Tech defeated Troy, 69-43, on Dec. 22, 2005 in Atlanta.
• Tech junior Brigitte Ardossi will not be the only Aussie on the court, the Trojans have five players from Australia on their roster. Sarah McAppion, Lauren Roper, Alyce Shearing, Kylie Morrissy and Danielle Realph all hail from “down under”.
• Troy’s Aarika Howard is from Atlanta, Ga. The freshman attended Westlake High School.
• The Yellow Jackets and the Trojans will each face Kennesaw State this season.

SWEET RESULTS IN SEASON OPENERS
The Yellow Jackets have enjoyed season openers throughout the program’s history. Tech is 24-10 (.697) all-time on opening day and are 17-4 (since 1978-79) when the season opener is played at Alexander Memorial Coliseum. Under head coach MaChelle Joseph, the Jackets are 5-0 on opening day and are 3-0 at home.

Last season, Chioma Nnamaka scored 18 points to lead Georgia Tech to a 69-50 victory over Davidson on opening night at the AMC. The Jackets have won six straight season openers.

JACKETS STING PEACH STATE ELITE, 87-70
Five Yellow Jackets scored in double figures as the Georgia Tech women’s basketball team sprinted to an 87-70 win over the Peach State Elite in its final preseason tune-up at Alexander Memorial Coliseum Sunday afternoon.
Alex Montgomery scored 20 points on eight-of-nine shooting from the field. She also dished out seven assists and grabbed five boards. Brigitte Ardossi and Shaday Woolcock finished with 12 points apiece, while Sasha Goodlett and Deja Foster scored 11 and 10 points, respectively.

PICK A POCKET OR TWO
After three seasons on the Flats, senior Jacqua Williams has earned the reputation as one of the best defenders in the nation. The speedster from Seattle, Wash., has racked 261 steals so far and is just 18 shy of breaking the school record. Last season, Williams finished with a single-season school record 118 steals, leading the ACC and ranking fourth in the nation with 3.8 per game. She has registered at least one steal in 39 straight games and even held the ACC single game record for steals with 11 (later broken by former Yellow Jacket Jill Ingram with 14).

I WANT TO GO FAST
Williams is not only one of the best defenders in the nation, she is also one of the fastest players. Williams has competed in two straight NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships in the 200-meter dash. Last season, Williams qualified for the national event after only one and a half months of competition.

SENIOR CLASS PILING UP WINS
Georgia Tech’s 2008-09 senior class of Tabitha Turner and Jacqua Williams have been a part of 57 wins since beginning their careers on the Flats. The two Jackets have helped Tech to back-to-back record-setting seasons and are on pace to become the most successful class in the history of the program. With 14 wins this season, the pair will accumulate the most wins by any senior class to ever play for the Yellow Jackets. Last year’s seniors finished with a school-best 69 wins in their careers.

MORE ON WILLIAMS
Jacqua Williams is the only Georgia Tech women’s basketball player to ever register at least 150 points, 100 steals and 100 rebounds in the same season when she did it last year.

AUSSIE, AUSSIE, AUSSIE … OYE, OYE, OYE
Junior Brigitte Ardossi started 26 games during her freshman season and helped the Jackets to their first win in the NCAA Tournament. Last season she was regulated to the first big off the bench and made the most of her opportunity by scoring 3.9 points per game and grabbing 2.8 rebounds in 14.5 minutes. Coach Joseph expects big things from her Aussie post-player in 2008-09 and has inserted her back into the starting lineup.

SHE CAN DO IT ALL
Anyone who watched Alex Montgomery play last season knows she can really do it all. She is not only the team’s top returning scorer (10.8) and rebounder (5.4), Montgomery has also shown she can dish it, steal it, block it or even win a jump ball. A starter of 26 games as a freshman, Montgomery will now become the focal point of the Yellow Jacket offense and key member of the team’s defensive sets.

MOVING OUT
Sophomore Iasia Hemingway excelled as an undersized post player for the Jackets last season, scoring over 20 points against the likes of Maryland’s Crystal Langhorne and Tasha Humphrey of Georgia. This season, Coach Joseph has added some taller players to the Jackets roster that will allow Hemingway to take her game outside to the wing. Hemingway will now have a chance to not only post up players her height, she will also be able to take the ball to the basket and box out smaller guards for rebounds.

GOODLETT IS GOOD
For the second straight year, Coach Joseph will start a freshman on opening night. 6-5 Sasha Goodlett has made a “big” impression on the coaching staff this preseason and will add a new dimension to the Yellow Jackets lineup. Joseph called her 2007-08 squad “the best 6-0 and under team in the country” but by adding Goodlett will give the Jackets the true center they have been missing. Along with Goodlett, Tech now lists five players at 6-2 or taller.

SIXTH (WO)MEN
Most teams are lucky enough to have a solid starting five, maybe even a sixth player that can step in and replace someone in the lineup. This season, Joseph feels she can list seven starters on her roster. Sophomore’s Deja Foster and Shaday Woolcock have shown the ability to step on the court and make an instant impact for the Jackets.

YOUNG GUNS
The 2008-09 Georgia Tech roster is noticeably young with 10 players listed as sophomores and freshmen. Though young, the team is the most athletic team Coach Joseph has had since taking over at Georgia Tech.

FULL COURT PRESS
Last season, Georgia Tech finished the season with a school record 456 steals and led the NCAA with 14.3 steals per game. This has to be credited to Coach Joseph’s pressing defense. Joseph will press for 40 minutes with numerous pressing schemes to keep the offensive off-balance. Joseph wants her team to “be an impressive running defensive team that creates opportunities for the offense.” TECH INKS THREE IN EARLY SIGNING PERIOD
Three high school women’s basketball standouts have signed letters of intent to play at Georgia Tech beginning in the 2009-10 season, head coach MaChelle Joseph announced.

Joining the Yellow Jacket program are 5-9 Sharena Taylor from Pontiac, Mich., 6-2 Kennesaw, Ga., native Jasmine Blain and 6-5 center Shayla Bivins of Jacksonville Fla. The trio has formed the No. 18 rated class in the nation by All-Star Girls Report.

JACKETS PICKED SIXTH IN ACC PRESEASON POLL
Georgia Tech’s women’s basketball team was picked to finish sixth in the Atlantic Coast Conference this year, as determined by a vote of the newly formed Blue Ribbon Panel at the ACC Women’s Basketball Media Day in Greensboro, N.C.

TOUGH SCHEDULE AHEAD
The Georgia Tech coaching staff has once again put together a challenging schedule for the Yellow Jackets. Tech will face nine teams ranked or receiving votes in the AP and ESPN/Coaches Polls. The team will also face three teams – UConn, North Carolina, Maryland – that were No. 1 seeds in the 2008 NCAA Tournament. Tech will face at least two teams ranked or receiving votes in each month besides March, where they will face a nationally-ranked Virginia team prior to postseason play.

I WOULD WALK 500 MILES AND I WOULD WALK 500 MORE
The Yellow Jackets will not only travel 500 miles, they will travel over 16,000 miles this season. With trips to Storrs, Conn., Boca Raton, Fla., Portland, Ore., Nassau, Bahamas and multiple trips during the ACC season, Tech will be road warriors over the next five months. Georgia Tech hopes to add to the mileage as they try to extend their postseason streak to three straight seasons.

TECH IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS
Georgia Tech is not in the preseason top 25 but it is receiving votes in both the AP and the ESPN/USA Today Coaches polls. The last time Tech was ranked in the top 25 was on Jan. 21, 2008. It was the first time the Yellow Jackets were ranked in the nationally polls since Jan. 19, 1993, 14 years to the week.

TECH ON THE TUBE
The Yellow Jackets will be featured on television 11 times during the 2008-09 season. Games will be shown on the Atlantic Conference Regional Sports Network, which is made up four stations. Tech will also be featured on Fox Sports Net South, ESPNU, Connecticut Public TV, Comcast Sports Northwest and Comcast Sports South.

Last season, Georgia Tech appeared on television 10 times and have been seen 79 different times over the past 10 seasons. The 11 games on television in 2008-09 equals the total of games the Yellow Jackets were featured in during the entire 2002-03 season (three games were during the postseason).

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