THE FLATS – Jordan Usher scored 19 points to lead a balanced Georgia Tech offense, and the Yellow Jackets’ defense kept Florida State in check throughout as Tech captured a 75-61 Atlantic Coast Conference basketball win over the Seminoles Wednesday night at McCamish Pavilion.
Four players reached double figures in the scoring column for the Jackets (9-10, 2-6 ACC), who won their third straight game in the series against FSU and snapped a six-game winning streak by the first-place Seminoles (13-6, 6-3).
The Seminoles bolted out to a 7-0 lead at the start, making their first four shots from the floor. The Yellow Jackets buckled down behind their zone defense and forced 17 turnovers in the game while limiting FSU to 41 percent from the floor, 30.8 percent in the second half. The Seminoles did not make a field goal over the final 5:05 of the game as Tech finished the game on a 14-5 run.
Tech gained the upper hand in the last five minutes of the first half. Behind 28-26, Tech reeled off an 18-5 run to get to intermission with a 44-33 lead, its largest against an ACC opponent this season.
FSU rallied to within five points at the 5:05 mark on Anthony Polite’s three-pointer, but that would be their last field goal as the Jackets limited the ‘Noles to five points on free throws while getting baskets from five different players in the closing stretch.
Usher added eight rebounds and five assists to his scoring total, while Michael Devoe scored 15 with five assists. Freshman Deebo Coleman scored 14 and Kyle Sturdivant added 12 points and four assists. The Jackets hit 10 three-point field goals in the game, eight of them in the first half, but none were bigger than Sturdivant’s triple at the 2:43 mark that restored Tech’s lead to eight points.
Anthony Polite led the Seminoles with 11 points, hitting all three of his three-point attempts, while Naheem McLeod added 10.
Georgia Tech concludes its four-game homestand Saturday with a noon tip against Miami. The game will be televised on the ACC’s Regional Sports Networks (Bally Sports South in Georgia).
Freshman Deebo Coleman set season high for points in an ACC game with 14, hitting three three-pointers. (photo by Danny Karnik)
- Georgia Tech has played seven of its first eight ACC games against the teams in the top half of Wednesday’s conference standings. The Jackets face first place Miami Saturday.
- Tech has utilized its original starting lineup with which it began the season for the last two games, as well as for six of the first eight games this season. Tech has utilized eight different starting lineups this season.
- Tech used only seven players in the game against FSU, its shortest rotation this season. All seven players scored.
- There were nine lead changes and five ties in the first half before Tech went on an 11-0 run and posted its largest halftime lead against an ACC team this season (44-33).
- Four players reached double figures in scoring for the second time this season for Georgia Tech. Tech placed four in double digits against Charleston Southern and three in four other games (Georgia Southern, 1st meeting vs. North Carolina, Louisville, Notre Dame).
- Tech has recorded 56 steals across its last four games, establishing a season high of 13 in each of its last two games against Clayton State and Florida State. The Jackets exceeded their season average (7.8 per game, 8.6 in ACC games) with 10 in the first half against the Seminoles. Tech is No. 2 in the ACC in steals vs. conference teams (9.13).
- Tech committed fewer than 10 turnovers for the fourth time this season (9 vs. FSU), and three of those games were against ACC opponents. The Jackets are third in the ACC in turnover margin in ACC games (plus-2.00).
- Tech took half of its field goal attempts came from beyond the three-point arc (27 of 54), but only eight of 25 attempts in the second half. The Jackets were 8-of-19 from distance in the first half, 10-of-27 for the game.
- Tech posted its most efficient offensive game this season, scoring 113.6 points per 100 possessions according the KenPom.com, surpassing the 112,4 in its win at Boston College.
- Tech also held its first ACC opponent under 100 points per 100 possessions this season (92.4 vs. FSU). The Seminoles made just 40.5 percent of their two-point shots.
- Tech’s last nine opponents have shot 29.7 percent from three-point range combined (58-of-195). The Jackets rank fourth in the ACC in three-point field goal defense at 30.8 percent.
- The Jackets’ reserves have scored 139 points in their last five games.
- Michael Devoe has reached double figures 75 times in his career with his 15-point game against FSU and now has 1,495 points in his Georgia Tech career. He needs three to pass Kenny Anderson (1,497 from 1989-91) for 17th place on Tech’s all-time list.
- Jordan Usher has scored in double digits 16 times in 19 games this season, and has done so in Tech’s last 11 games. During that stretch, the senior has averaged 16.7 points per game (68-137 FG, 49.6 pct., 20-47 3pt FG). He averages 15.4 for the season, 15.0 in ACC games.
- Kyle Sturdivant has reached double digits in six games this season three in ACC games after scoring 12 points ith four asissts and no turnovers in 30:21 against FSU. He scored two baskets, including a three-pointer, in the Yellow Jackets’ 14-5 closing run.
- Freshman Deebo Coleman reached double figures for the second straight game (14 vs. FSU) and for the third time in an ACC game. He went 3-of-5 from three-point range and 5-of-8 overall.
- Khalid Moore scored nine points against FSU before fouling out and is averaging a career-high 6.8 points vs. ACC teams. He went 7-of-10 from the free throw line against the Seminoles, career highs for free throws made and attempted.
Kyle Sturdivant scored 12 points with four assists and hit two key baskets in the Jackets’ closing run. (photo by Danny Karnik)