Feb. 24, 2012
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ATLANTA – Looking to even its season series with Maryland, Georgia Tech completes a two-game homestand Saturday with a 2:30 p.m. regionally-televised game against the Terrapins at Philips Arena.
The second meeting between the two schools this season seen in the ACC Network (WATL-TV in Atlanta) can be heard in Atlanta on flagship station 790 the Zone (790 AM) and True Oldies 106.7 FM, as well as across the country on satellite radio (Srius Ch. 128, XM Ch. 192).
In its first year under head coach Brian Gregory, Tech (9-18, 2-11 ACC) has lost four straight games and 10 of its last 11, including a 56-37 decision to Clemson Tuesday night at Philips Arena that finished off a season sweep of the Jackets by the Tigers, The Terrapins defeated Tech, 61-50, back on Jan. 15 in College Park.
Tech 1-7 this season at Philips Arena, one of two alternate home venues for the Yellow Jackets and the site of ACC Tournament March 8-11.
Maryland, 16-11 overall and 6-7 in the ACC in its first season under head coach Mark Turgeon, comes to Atlanta on the heels of a 75-70 homecourt win over Miami on Tuesday. The Terrapins, who are 1-6 on the road this year, have split their last eight conference games and tied for seventh place in the ACC.
The Jackets, who finish the regular season with three home games in their last four, follow Saturday’s game with their final road trip of the season, a visit to Boston College next Wednesday (7 p.m.).
Georgia Tech’s primary goals this season have been to play solid team defense, win the rebounding battle, and be efficient on offense. The Yellow Jackets have a +4.0 edge in rebounding for the season and has won that battle in 16 of 27 games.
The Yellow Jackets rank 4th in the ACC (46th nationally) in field goal percentage defense (40.6 pct.) and 5th in scoring defense (88th nationally, 63.2 ppg). Tech has held 13 opponents under 40 percent from the field, and have held 11 teams under 60 points.
Tech has found the going difficult on the offensive end throughout the conference schedule with a few exceptions. The Yellow Jackets shot a season-high 58.3 percent in an overtime loss at Virginia Tech last Saturday, shot 49.1 percent against Duke on J7, 51 percent at NC State on J11, and 45.6 percent at North Carolina on J29. Tech averaged 77.5 points in those games.
But altogether, Tech has managed to score just 57.9 points against the conference this year, which would be an all-time low for Tech in the shot clock era, and has converted just 40.8 percent of its field goals. Tech has been held under 40 points in a game twice, and under 60 six other times.
Tech has averaged just 51.1 points and shot 37.9 percent from the floor (20.5% on 3s) in its eight games at Philips Arena this year and has been outscored by 14.9 points per game.
Maryland averaged 68.5 points per game (6th in the ACC) and ranks 11th in the ACC in scoring defense (70.1 ppg). The Terrapins give up 71.8 ppg in conference games (12th).
Whom to Watch
6-8 sophomore Kammeon Holsey has scored in double figures in four of his last five games, leading Tech in scoring in three of those. He has averaged 12.6 points on 56.1% shooting and has gone 17-for-24 from the foul line over that stretch.
Holsey leads Tech in field goal percentage both in all games (60.1%) and ACC games (50.6%).
6-11 sophomore center Daniel Miller has scored in double figures in five of his last six games, averaging 9.5 points and 8.0 rebounds over that stretch. Miller has hit 25-of-41 shots from the floor, 6-for-7 from the foul line. He has 15 blocked shots, 6 assists and 6 steals.
Miller has made 50% of his shots in ACC games and ranks 2nd in the ACC in blocked shots (2.4 per game).
6-2 point guard Mfon Udofia has 19 assists and 11 turnovers in his last five games (168 minutes). But he has been held scoreless in three of Tech’s last five games.
Point guards Udofia and Pierre Jordan have just 13 turnovers between them in the last 5 games (229 minutes).
6-3 sophomore Brandon Reed has reached double digits in points in three straight games and four of his last six, beginning iwth an 18-point effort at FSU on F1. He has averaged 10.8 points over that stretch, making 39.4% of his 3s and 41.1% of his shots overall.
Reed has made his last 16 free throw attempts dating back to Jan. 11 at NC State. But he has not been to the line in Tech’s last three games.
6-10 sophomore center Nate Hicks has been sidelined with mononucleosis since F8 (missed 4 games). He is not expected to play until next week.
6-5 sophomore forward Jason Morris played only 17 minutes (0 points) against Clemson after suffering a mid-foot strain late in Tech’s overtime loss at Virginia Tech.
6-5 junior forward Glen Rice, Jr., was suspended indefinitely on F17 and has not played the last two games.
6-3 senior Nick Foreman, a former walk-on who earned a scholarship this year, has played 34 minutes in Tech’s last two games to fill the void left by the absences of Glen Rice, Jr., Nate Nicks and Jason Morris.
Last Time We Met
Coming off a big road win at NC State, Georgia Tech was not able to sustain the momentum in a 61-50 loss at Maryland on Jan. 15.
Maryland prevailed in the defensive battle in which both teams shot under 34 percent, but the Terps hit 6-of-14 threes and went 19-of-23 from the free throw line.
Sean Mosley scored a game-high 18 points for Maryland, all but two of his points in the second half. He went just 3-of-8 from the floor, but one of those was a 3-point basket from well beyond the arc at the 2:36 mark after Tech had closed to within 54-50. He also went 10-of-10 from the free throw line.
Georgia Tech snapped a nine-game losing streak in the series with its 69-64 win over the Terrapins in the 2010 ACC Tournament, but Maryland has won 11 of the last 12 in the series to pull ahead of Georgia Tech all-time. Tech’s only win in that span came in the 2010 ACC Tournament.
Still, Tech’s 34-35 record against Maryland since 1979-80 is its best mark against any ACC team since the Jackets joined the league.
Maryland won the first meeting between the two teams this year, 61-50 on Jan. 15 in College Park. It was the fewest points either team had scored in 53 meetings dating back to a 48-43 win by Tech on Feb. 19, 1985.
Twelve of the 19 games between Tech and Maryland since the 2000-01 season have been decided by 10 points or fewer.
Tech was 17-11 against Maryland in Alexander Memorial Coliseum, and is 19-11 in games played in Atlanta, but the Terps won their last four games at the Thrillerdome. They were 12-6 against Tech on its home court under Gary Williams, and 5-3 in the last eight meetings.
The Jackets are 1-7 in the Comcast Center, and were 10-17 at Cole Field House.
Maryland won the first nine games of the series, but Tech turned the tables under head coach Bobby Cremins, winning 28 of 35 meetings (including 10 in a row at one point) through the 1995-96 season. The Terps won the next seven in a row before Cremins’ last Tech Jacket team won 69-68 at home on Jan. 15, 2000.
Tech is 4-4 in ACC Tournament meetings with Maryland. The Terrapins were Tech’s first-ever ACC Tournament opponent, a 51-49 overtime win in the 1980 first round in Greensboro. Maryland also was Tech’s first ACC Tournament victim, in 1983 at the Omni by a 64-58 score.