Nov. 29, 2013
BROOKLYN, N.Y. – The rv/– Georgia Tech women’s basketball team (3-2) outscored Southern Utah (4-2) 50-33 in the second half on its way to an 85-60 victory in the semifinals of the LIU Turkey Classic.
With the win, the Jackets face McNeese State tomorrow at 4:30 p.m. in the championship game. The Cowgirls defeated LIU Brooklyn, 71-57, in the first game of the tournament to advance.
Twelve Yellow Jackets scored against the Thunderbirds with three Tech players contributing double-figures. Senior Tyaunna Marshall led the Jackets with her first double-double of the season, scoring a season-high 21 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.
“I was really impressed with the play of Dawnn Maye and Tyaunna Marshall,” head coach MaChelle Joseph said. “I thought the two seniors really stepped up and made some plays late at the end of the first half and at the beginning of the second half. That really separated us. I give credit to Southern Utah. I thought that they were very experienced and a well-coached team.”
Freshman Kaela Davis scored in double-figures for the fifth-straight game, notching 19 points and grabbing four boards. Seventeen of Davis’ points came in the first half. Senior Dawnn Maye scored in double-figures for the 16th time in her career, dropping 12 points against the Thunderbirds. Maye shot 5-for-6 from the field while dishing out five assists and recording a team-high four steals.
Georgia Tech forced the Thunderbirds to turn the ball over 24 times, while scoring 27 points off of turnovers. Tech also had 13 steals, a season-high, and held a 51-27 advantage in rebounds.
“I thought our defensive pressure was a factor in this game,” Joseph said. “I thought we did a much better job getting offense off of our defense.”
The Jackets had a strong hold on the lead for most of the first half, until the Thunderbirds used a 10-0 run that began with 13:02 remaining to take the lead for first time of the night, 17-16. The lead would bounce back and forth between the two teams six times within a span of 8:34.
With 3:07 remaining in the first half, the Thunderbirds took a 27-25 lead off of a jump shot by Carli Moreland. The Jackets answered Southern Utah’s two-point lead by putting together a 10-0 run that would last 2:46 to close out the first half and propel them to a 35-27 lead. During the run, Marshall contributed six of her 10 first-half points while a tough Jacket defense forced three Thunderbird turnovers. Marshall and Davis accounted for 27 of the Jackets’ 35 points in the first half.
The Jackets carried their game-changing run into the second half, outscoring the Thunderbirds, 7-2 in the first 2:25 minutes to take a 42-29 lead.
Tech continued to build on its lead by orchestrating a 12-2 run to push their advantage to 54-37 with 12:38 left. During the run, Maye hit a jumper and handed out an assist. Maye scored 10 of her 12 points in the second half against the Thunderbirds.
The Jackets took their largest lead of the night with 1:21 remaining in the game when sophomore Kymberly Ellison went hard to the basket to score a layup. Ellison’s two-points were her first of the season and put the Jackets up by 30 points, 85-55.
In the beginning of the contest, Georgia Tech held Southern Utah scoreless for the first 2:43 by scoring six-straight unanswered points. Davis scored all of those six points, plus four more, to score 10-straight to open up the game.
Southern Utah was led by Andrea Jones, who scored 13 points. Moreland notched 10 points while grabbing a team-high six points for the Thunderbirds.