Dec. 20, 2013
SAN JUAN – In its second-straight game scoring more than 100 points, the Georgia Tech women’s basketball team (8-2) used a balance scoring attack to defeat UTEP, 102-77, in the first game of the Puerto Rico Classic.
The victory was the sixth-straight for the Yellow Jackets and the win handed UTEP (9-1) its first loss of the season. Both teams are receiving votes in the AP and USA Today polls.
“I’m really pleased with the overall play of our team tonight,” head coach MaChelle Joseph said. “I thought from top to bottom, everybody played their role and did their job.”
On Tuesday night, the Jackets defeated Portland State, 104-54, which marks the first time since the 1992-1993 season that Georgia Tech has scored 100 points in back-to-back games. This was also the first time since the 1994-95 season that the Jackets have defeated two opponents by more than 100 points in the same season.
“I knew if Tyaunna Marshall and Kaela Davis could play well together at the same time, we could have a special team,” Joseph said. “I really felt like tonight they both did their jobs at a high level.”
Davis and Marshall combined for 49 of the Jackets’ 102 total points. Davis led the scoring effort, recording 26 points, five rebounds and five steals. Marshall added 23 points, five assists, five steals and eight rebounds. Davis has scored 20-plus points in five games this season while Marshall has done the same in four. That means that at least one Yellow Jacket has scored 20-plus in every game so far this season besides two.
Davis and Marshall’s 20-plus point performances marks the first time two Jackets have scored 20 or more points in the same game since Marshall and junior Sydney Wallace accomplished the feat against Wake Forest on Feb. 21, 2013.
“I thought Sydney Wallace made some big shots and Roddreka Rogers continues to get better and better,” Joseph said. “Nariah Taylor gave us quality minutes. In those last five minutes, I thought Donnaizha Fountain did a great job coming off of the bench. She was a real spark for us.”
Wallace contributed 13 points, going 3-for-6 from behind the arc against the Miners. Rogers also scored in double-figures, notching 11 points and six rebounds.
The Jackets used a tight defense and a strong presence in the paint to jump ahead early against the Miners and hold the lead for the remainder of the game. Georgia Tech also outscored UTEP, 59-28, in the paint. Overall, Tech shot 48.1 percent (39-for-81) from the field and forced UTEP to turn the ball over 20 times. The Jackets took advantage of the Miner’s mistakes, scoring 25 points off of turnovers.
The dynamic of duo of Marshall and Davis each had strong first halves to get the Jackets off to a good start. Davis scored 17 points while Marshall had 16 points in the first 20 minutes of play.
Davis broke open the game scoring five-straight points which turned into a 7-3 run by the Jackets within the first two minutes.
The closest the Miners would come to Tech’s lead was by two points, 7-5, at 17:53 in the first half but Marshall and Davis combined to go on a 10-5 over three minutes to further the Jackets’ lead to 17-10.
The Yellow Jackets headed into halftime up 16 points, 54-38.
The closest the Miners would get to Tech’s lead in the second half was at 18:21 when Kayla Thorton hit a 3-pointer to pull her team within 13 points, 56-43, of the Yellow Jackets.
The Jackets kept its fast paced offense going and led by double-figures the entire second half. Four-straight points by Nariah Taylor extended Tech’s lead into the 20 point-range with 7:03 remaining, 82-62.
Fountain sealed the deal for the Jackets, coming off the bench with 2:26 on the clock and scoring nine points in that span. Fountain shot 4-for-5 from the field and scored a 3-pointer with 22 seconds left in the game to push the score over 100 for Tech. Her 3-pointer also gave the Jackets’ its largest lead of the night at 27 points.
Thorton led the Miners, scoring 15 points and grabbing nine rebounds. Cameasha Turner also scored in double figures for UTEP, contributing 14 points, while Chrishauna Parker dished out a team-high four assists.
The Yellow Jackets face another undefeated team tomorrow, #16/13 Oklahoma State (9-0) at 5 p.m. ET. Tune into WREK, 91.1 FM, or online at www.WREK.org to keep up with the action.