Jan. 25, 2014
By Jon Cooper
The Good Word
Georgia Tech looks to make it two straight on the road in the ACC and pull closer to .500 in conference play when it visits NC State. Tip-off at PNC Arena is set for 1:00 p.m.
The Yellow Jackets snapped their two-game losing streak on Tuesday night at Conte Forum, topping Boston College, 68-60. Guard Trae Golden poured in a game-high 24, hitting 4-of-8 from three and going 8-for-8 from the line, while Kam Holsey added 13 and Chris Bolden chipped in 11. The Jackets, who never trailed and led the final 39:56, shot 52.1 percent for the game. They made 73.9 percent of their first-half shots in building a 19-point first-half lead and a 42-27 halftime bulge. The Eagles cut the lead to one with 4:44 left, but Golden scored five straight points on back-to-back jumpers and the Jackets held off B.C. the rest of the way.
The Wolfpack snapped a three-game losing streak on Monday night at PNC Arena, using a strong second-half effort to blow past Maryland, 65-56. Playing without leading scorer T.J. Warren (sprained left ankle), State got 19 second-half points from guard Ralston Turner to overcome a sluggish first half. The `Pack trailed 29-20 at intermission after shooting 22.2 percent in the first half. The lead reached 11 early in the second half before State went on a game-tying 16-5 run then took the lead for good on a Turner 3-pointer with 8:50 to play. With the game 54-53 with 5:40 to go, the Wolfpack went on an 8-2 run to put the game away. State shot 56.7 percent in the final 20 minutes, led by Turner, playing for the first time in 14 games, who was 6-for-11, 5-for-10 from behind the arc.
Tonight’s game will be the 92nd meeting between the schools (Georgia Tech trails, 54-37) in a series that dates back to 1925. The teams have split the last 12 meetings, although the Jackets have has lost three straight. Tech has not fared well in Raleigh overall, having won nine times in 39 games and only twice in 12 visits to PNC Arena But the two wins have come during the last five trips there.
The game can be seen on WATL in Atlanta, with Steve Martin and Mike Gminski calling the action. It can be heard on the Georgia Tech IMG Sports Network, WYAY (106.7 FM), with Brandon Gaudin and Randy Waters on the call. The game also can be heard via Satellite Radio on Sirius and XM (Channel 85 on both systems will carry the NC State broadcast). Tech fans can see the game online on ESPN3 and get up-to-the-minute stats or Ramblinwreck.com.
And now, the starting five for today’s game.
The Last Time We Met: Georgia Tech had its Senior Day ruined by NC State, as the Wolfpack toppled the Jackets, 70-57, last March 3. Senior guard Mfon Udofia, playing his last home game, led the Jackets with nine points. The Jackets, who trailed by as much as 14 in the first-half, trailed by three at the break and stayed within one possession for the first eight minutes of the second half. But they shot only 27.3 percent (3-for-11) in the second 20 and made only one of seven three-point tries as the Wolfpack pulled away. The Jackets had a 19-8 edge on second-chance points and a 26-14 advantage off the bench, but were outscored 20-6 off turnovers and 12-0 off the break.
Tech Trivia: Only three Yellow Jackets have ever scored 30 points in a game against NC State. Who was the last to do it?
As Chris Goes…: Looking for an omen on how Georgia Tech’s day will go? Keep an eye on Chris Bolden. The sophomore guard is shooting better than 47 percent (8-for-17), and a sizzling 63.6 percent on threes (7-for-11) in the Jackets conference victories over Notre Dame and Boston College, including going 4-for-6, 3-for-3 from three in Tuesday’s win at the Eagles. In the four ACC games the Jackets have lost he’s shot 21.0 percent (4-for-19), making only 2 of 12 on 3-point attempts (16.7 percent).
Good Things Coming In 3’s: The three ball is starting to become an ally for the Yellow Jackets. They’ve outscored their opponents from behind the arc 81-57 over the last four games — they were even with Boston College, 24-24 — and have made 27 3-point field goals in that span. They’ve made eight 3’s in two of their last three games and at least seven in three of their last four. At B.C. they shot over 50 percent from three-point range for the first time this season, shooting 53.3 percent (8-for-15). They’ve also defended the three better, as opponents have shot only 27.9 percent (19-for-68). The Eagles were the first team in the last four games to convert better than 30 percent from long range (34.8 on 8-for-23). Trae Golden has led the Jackets, hitting on 42.3 percent (11-for-26, 4-for-8 vs. B.C.) of his 3-PTFGAs.
On The Rebound: Georgia Tech showed a commitment to rebounding as a team against Boston College, as all nine players that saw the court grabbed at least two rebounds. Tech dominated the boards, 32-20. Guards Marcus Georges-Hunt and Corey Heyward each pulled in a team-high five rebounds. It’s the second time in the last four games that every Jacket grabbed multiple rebounds. The other game in which they pulled off the feat was the Jan. 11 victory over Notre Dame — although in that game they were out-rebounded, 41-40. Prior to Tuesday night, Tech had been outrebounded in three of its previous four games. Georges-Hunt has showed a renewed vigor on the boards, as he’s grabbed 11 rebounds in his last two games. He had 11 combined in his previous four games. His four offensive rebounds against Miami two games ago were the most he’s recorded since grabbing a season-high five in the season opener. Heyward’s five boards were a career-best.
The Sixth Man: The Yellow Jackets’ 15-point halftime lead over B.C. was its largest since Nov. 26, vs. Mississippi Valley State, when they led by a season high 27…Georgia Tech is 4-4 over its last eight ACC road games. They were 3-33 previously…Tech Trivia: Mark Price, who scored 30 on Feb. 3, 1983 at Alexander Memorial Coliseum. The other 30-point Jackets are Pres Judy, who had 37, the most by a Yellow Jacket against State, on Jan. 14, 1967, also at AMC and Dave Clark, the first to hit 30 against the Wolfpack, getting 31 on Feb. 12, 1966 in Raleigh…Tonight’s game features two of the ACC’s top shot-blockers, in Tech’s Daniel Miller (2.5 bpg, second), and State’s freshman BeeJay Anya (1.8, sixth). Miller had his 13-game streak with a blocked shot ended Tuesday night against Boston College. It was only the third game all season Miller did not reject a shot.
GEORGIA TECH SCORING LEADER: Trae Golden, 14.1 ppg
NC STATE SCORING LEADER: T.J. Warren, 22.2 ppg
GEORGIA TECH SCORING LEADER (ACC): Trae Golden, 16.0 ppg
NC STATE SCORING LEADER (ACC): T.J. Warren, 17.8 ppg
GEORGIA TECH REBOUNDS LEADER: Daniel Miller, 7.7
NC STATE REBOUNDS LEADER: T.J. Warren, 7.3 rpg
GEORGIA TECH REBOUNDS LEADER (ACC): Daniel Miller, 6.7 rpg
NC STATE REBOUNDS LEADER (ACC): T.J. Warren, 6.0 rpg
GEORGIA TECH ASSISTS LEADER: Trae Golden, 3.3 apg
NC STATE ASSISTS LEADER: Anthony Barber, 4.2 rpg
GEORGIA TECH ASSISTS LEADER (ACC): Trae Golden, 2.7 apg
NC STATE ASSISTS LEADER (ACC): Anthony Barber, 3.2 apg
GEORGIA TECH PPG: 69.1/62.7 ppg
OPP. PPG: 66.7/70.3 ppg.
NC STATE PPG/ACC: 71.8/62.6 ppg
OPP. PPG/ACC: 69.9/77.0 ppg.
NC STATE Player To Watch: T.J. Warren: The Wolfpack is hoping to get the 6-8, 215-pound sophomore forward back in the lineup, after he sat out Monday’s game against Maryland with a sprained left ankle. Warren, named to the Midseason Wooden Award Watch List, leads the ACC in scoring at 22.2 ppg, is sixth in rebounding with 7.3 rpg, including an ACC-best 3.22 offensive rebounds, ranks fourth in field goal percentage at 50.3 percent, is eighth in minutes played (34.1 mpg), and is 10th in steals (1.4 spg). He’s the only player in the ACC with multiple 30-point games, going for 30 against Florida Gulf Coast on Nov. 26, then against Eastern Carolina, on Dec. 21, when he put in a career-best 32, and leads the team with four double-doubles. A member of the ACC All-Freshman Team last year and two-time ACC Rookie of the Week, Warren went scoreless the first time he played against Georgia Tech (he missed his only FGA) but had a superb game at Georgia Tech, going for 14 points on 7-for-12 shooting.
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