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Starting Five: Georgia Tech (7-5) vs. Charlotte (7-6)

Jan. 1, 2011

TECH LEADING SCORER: Iman Shumpert, 14.8 ppg
CHARLOTTE LEADING SCORER: Jamar Briscoe, 13.6 ppg

TECH LEADING REBOUNDER: Daniel Miller, 5.7 rpg
CHARLOTTE LEADING REBOUNDER: Chris Braswell, 6.6 rpg.

TECH PPG: 70.0 ppg
OPP. PPG: 64.9 ppg.

CHARLOTTE PPG: 67.3 ppg
OPP. PPG: 67.6 ppg.

Charlotte Player to Watch: Derrio Green: Tech nearly learned the hard way about the 6-2 junior guard last season, when he hit seven three-pointers and scored a career-high 31 points. Thus far this season, Green has scored in double-figures 11 times and in six straight games, and has been instrumental in recent late victories over Tennessee, Wright State and Mercer.

Georgia Tech looks to stay hot as it enters 2011, welcoming Charlotte to Alexander Memorial Coliseum. Tip-off is at 6:00 p.m. The TV broadcast by the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network is available on DirecTV Ch. 640 and Dish Network Ch. 432.

The Yellow Jackets, 5-1 at home, have three wins in their last four games and are coming off a gutsy, come-from-behind 87-78 win over Mercer. Glen Rice, Jr. poured in a career-high 24 and Iman Shumpert added 15, all in the second half, as the Jackets overcame a six-point halftime deficit, outscoring the Bears, 46-31 in the second half.

The 49ers earned their first road win in four tries in their last game, edging Mercer, 64-63. They come in riding a season-high three-game winning streak, all of them come-from-behind victories, two of them won in the final minute, including an upset of No. 7 Tennessee. At Mercer, Charlotte trailed 58-52 inside of six minutes but took the lead for good with 2:50 left. Javarris Barnett’s career-high 18 keyed the victory.

Georgia Tech is 6-0 all-time against Charlotte, 3-0 at AMC. In the Paul Hewitt era, the Jackets are 2-0, winning, 82-77, at the 2007 Paradise Jam in the Virgin Islands, and escaping last season, 76-67, at Halton Arena, where the Jackets nearly squandered a 15-point second-half lead.

Tonight’s game will not be televised but can be heard on the Georgia Tech/ISP Sports Network’s flagship stations WQXI-AM (790 the Zone) and WYAY (106.7 FM). Wes Durham and Randy Waters call the action. Fans also can follow the game on Ramblinwreck.com.

Here now, the starting five for today’s game.

Quadruple-Double:
Friday’s win over Mercer saw four Yellow Jackets score in double digits — Rice (24), Shumpert (15) and redshirt freshman Kammeon Holsey and true freshman Jason Morris each scoring 13. It was the third time this season that the Jackets had such scoring depth. They also did it on Dec. 11 against Savannah State (Brian Oliver and Shumpert 17, Daniel Miller 14, Mfon Udofia 12) and Nov. 19 against Niagara (Oliver 17, Udofia 13, Shumpert 12, Rice 10). Tech is 3-0 in those games, all three of which came at Alexander Memorial Coliseum.

Don’t Touch That Dial:
The Yellow Jackets are 7-0 when leading with 5:00 to play. That could set up an interesting finish against Charlotte, which is 3-5 when trailing with 5:00 to play, but has won three straight. Tech would like to turn around a trend that has seen them go 0-3 in games decided by five points or fewer. The Niners are 3-2 in such games.

Kid Power:
Freshmen came up huge in the win over the Bears, as true freshmen Daniel Miller and Jason Morris combined for 22 points and eight rebounds, two blocks and two steals. The duo combined to shoot 7-for-10 and Morris nailed both three-point attempts. They also converted 6 of 10 free throw attempts. In his Morris’ last two games, he has scored 21 points in 27 minutes of action, shooting 6-for-9, 3-of-4 on three-point attempts and 7-of-8 on free throws. Miller has converted six of his last nine FGAs, while grabbing 16 rebounds, four of them off the offensive glass.

The Holsey Enchilada:
Redshirt freshman Kammeon Holsey completed Georgia Tech’s third different starting lineup and became the second freshman (along with Daniel Miller) and seventh different player to make a start. Holsey made the most of his first collegiate start, as in a season-high 25 minutes, he took six shots, making five of them (also a career best) and made 3-of-4 free throws, matching career-bests for FTAs and FTMs. His five rebounds matched his career-high and his team-high three offensive rebounds were one off his best.

He Can Shoot, Too:
In Friday’s Starting Five, we highlighted Glen Rice, Jr.’s free throw shooting, passing and defense. Now his offense is coming to the forefront. Rice has becoming more assertive, putting up 28 shots in the last two games — he’d taken 27 in the previous four — and he’s canned 13 of them. He’s really picked it up from three, making four of 10 against Mercer, and 5-of-14 over the last two games. Rice had made five threes in his first 10 games.

The Sixth Man:
In Friday’s Starting Five, I inadvertently called the Mercer game Georgia Tech’s final non-conference game at Alexander Memorial Coliseum. It actually was the final non-conference game in 2010. Today’s game against Charlotte is Georgia Tech’s final non-conference game at Alexander Memorial Coliseum for this season. But thanks to the win, we now can happily update the note. So, since the beginning of the 1981-82 season, the Jackets have won 176 of 190 games (the 92.6 winning percentage doesn’t change) and it will remain for posterity that only six teams — Richmond in 1987, Louisville in ’89, College of Charleston in ’93 and Penn, Tulane, and IUPUI in 2001-02 — came out of Atlanta with a ‘W.’

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