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Jackson Hits Milestone, Jackets Fall at Virginia

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. Bianca Jackson scored her 1,000th-career point and four Yellow Jackets posted double-figure scoring numbers, but it wasn’t enough as Georgia Tech fell at Virginia Thursday night, 69-63.

A slow start from the Jackets (9-4, 0-2 ACC) gave Virginia (13-1, 2-1 ACC) an opportunity to put together an 11-0 run early in the first quarter for an 11-3 lead. But after going scoreless for nearly five minutes, Tech slowly attacked its deficit, closing the gap to 16-13 off two made free throws from Cameron Swartz to open the second quarter. Jackson, who led all scorers with 11 first half points, knotted the game with a three-pointer at 4:38, setting up a 20-20 ballgame. It was a back-and-forth game in the final minutes before Inés Noguero drained a triple and Jackson connected on a pair of free throws for a 31-28 Georgia Tech halftime lead.

Tech came out of intermission hitting back-to-back buckets from Aixa Wone Aranaz and Tonie Morgan before Virginia’s Mir McLean scored 11 points in the third quarter to help the Cavaliers open a double-digit lead. At the 6:35 mark, Jackson joined the elite 1,000 career points club on a three-pointer to give Tech a 38-32 advantage. The lead was erased as Virginia outscored Tech, 27-16, in the period for a 55-47 lead entering the fourth quarter.

Trailing by 10, 61-51, with 7:23 left to play, Swartz personally cut Virginia’s lead to three with a 7-0 run off a jumper, three-pointer and two free throws, setting up a 61-58 score with 5:43 to go. But Virginia was able to maintain a two-possession advantage and finished the game 4-of-6 at the charity stripe for the 69-63 final.

Bianca Jackson scored 14 points in John Paul Jones Arena on Thursday to hit 1,000 career points throughout her collegiate career. Photo courtesy of Virginia Athletics

Swartz led Tech offensively with 16 points, followed by Jackson with 14, Morgan with 12 and Hermosa with 10. Hermosa narrowly missed a double-double with eight rebounds as the Jackets won the battle on the glass, 34-32. Both teams shot over 40.0 percent from the field – Tech at 40.8 percent and Virginia at 47.3 percent. Each team also attempted 24 free throws with Tech converting 19 to Virginia’s 14.

Virginia, which is one week out of being ranked in the top 25 and currently receiving votes, saw all 10 players on the floor contribute offensively. McLean led Virginia with 13 points and nine rebounds, while Alexia Smith added 10 points.

Georgia Tech has a short stay at home, welcoming Florida State to McCamish Pavilion on Sunday, Jan. 1. Tip is slated for 2 p.m. on ACC Network Extra.

 

 

Competitive Drive Initiative

In a unified endeavor, Georgia Tech, the Georgia Tech Foundation, Georgia Tech athletics and the Alexander-Tharpe Fund have come together to accelerate funding for student-athlete scholarships with the launch of the Competitive Drive Initiative. The initiative met its initial fundraising goal of $2.5 million in less than six weeks and has extended its target to $3.5 million raised by Dec. 31. Any new gift to the A-T Fund’s Athletic Scholarship Fund made through Dec. 31 will be matched dollar-for-dollar by the Georgia Tech Foundation, meaning that if the $3.5 million fundraising goal is met, the matching gift would result in a $7 million impact for Georgia Tech athletics. To learn more and to contribute online, visit atfund.org/accelerate.

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