Georgia smothers Aggies in 52-46 win

The Georgia Bulldogs (12-11, 6-4) edged the Texas A & M Aggies 52-46 in Athens on Saturday in a game that lasted nearly two and a half hours, featuring 47 total fouls.

Anyone at the game yesterday that was hoping to see some offense surely left Stegeman a little disappointed. Both of these teams entered the game ranking 3rd and 4th in the SEC in team defense in conference games. Although, in a game where Georgia shot 32% from the floor and the Aggies managed to make only 24% of their field attempts, it was hard at times to decipher if we were watching really good defense or inept offense (or a little of both).

However, the Dawgs did secure the win – their fifth in a row – and even more impressively, Georgia won with out a single field goal from Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. For the first time in his career at UGA, Pope failed to convert a shot from the floor. KCP, who was blanketed by Elston Turner for the entire game, managed only three field goal attempts, and he was just able to reach 10 points by the grace of 10 shots from the line. Fortunately for Pope (and the Dawgs), he was perfect from the line, helping him extend his double-figures scoring streak to 23 games on the year.

KCP’s inability to find shots on Saturday may have been a product of his efforts on the defensive side of the ball, where he held the Aggies leading scorer – Elston Turner – to just 2 field goals on 14 tries. Similarly to Pope, Turner scored the majority of his 13 points (9) from the free throw line.

For Georgia, the offensive stallion of the night was Nemanja Djurisic, who paced UGA with 13 points.

The Dawgs opened up a wide margin early in this game, building an 11-1 lead a little over five minutes into the first half following a Neme jumper. Georgia maintained its advantage for much of the half, taking a 25-16 lead into the intermission.

After the break, UGA pushed its lead to 30-18 with 15:45 remaining following a pair of free throws from Pope.

However, A & M point guard Fabyion Harris, who led all scorers with 17 points, ignited a ferocious Aggie run by hitting three shots from beyond the arc, and after a pair of free throws from J’Mychal Reese the Georgia lead had been cut to 35-32 with less than 10 minutes left in the game.

With the Dawgs teetering on the brink of collapse, senior point guard Vincent Williams buried a three-pointer on the other end, shooting the UGA lead back up to 38-32.

Sherrard Brantley would then hit a three from the wing with 7:02 remaining, and Georgia was back on top 43-32.

From this point UGA was able to salt away the rest of the game from the free throw line, where Georgia shot an impressive 25-32 on the night (78%).

Other than some last-minute shenanigans from the officiating crew in the waning seconds, the Dawgs cruised to the 52-46 victory for the most part after the Brantley three-pointer.

Credit Vincent Williams though, who scored 7 points in 16 minutes, and for the second-straight game made a clutch shot for his team late in the second half.

After the game, Coach Mark Fox praised his team for becoming just that – a team. He pointed out that everyone chipped-in in some way on Saturday, and he really sounded proud of the way this Georgia squad enjoys playing with one another.

Winning 6 of 7 games can do that for a team.

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5 thoughts on “Georgia smothers Aggies in 52-46 win

  1. In a game that I had worries about, I immediately felt better at the opening when Vincent laid out on the floor trying to get a steal. I knew we’d come to play. Unfortunately, one referee decided to inject himself into the game and called (too easily) two-thirds of all the fouls. Many of them phantoms. One of the other two also called some howlers. Only the elder gray-haired ref kept his whistle in check. When he blew it, the calls were true. Yes, the other two needed their police escort off the court. As for us, no we couldn’t shoot, but I was happy with our D. We got tired and gave up some looks, but our depth beat their own fatigue. I felt Vincent, Sherrard, and John Florveus gave us some great defensive minutes. Nothing to write home about offensively (especially Florveus), but they led a grinding defensive effort. Too bad Donte fouled out on the most ridiculously imagined fouls of the night. It wasn’t pretty, but our tired team, beat a talented tired team AND two referees! I’m just praying we can recharge before a very late Tuesday matchup. If we get another solid game from everyone again, I think we can take Alabama. Go Dawgs!

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  2. Boy do I concur on Donte’s last foul! These refs were horrible, and one guy below me, by the middle of the second half, was on his feet at every whistle calling “jump ball!” after all the ludricous jump balls the Aggies got after virtually mugging our guys to (occasionally) getting a hand on the rock.
    When I realized that KCP had not shot the ball two-thirds of the way through the first half, I started watching his match-up with Turner very closely. What a defensive masterpiece–two throughbreds going head-to-head and playing their hearts out. My hat’s off to both of them. While Turner can be a great defender, KCP could not create against him, and should he jump to the League next year, he’d be going up against someone just as good most nights. This is why I really do believe he should stick around one more year. If he were to improve half as much next year to what he became this year, he’d be a lottery pick for sure and would probably make more money in the long run.

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    1. I’ll just mention that KCP isn’t going anywhere yet. When Trey and Travis left, the four sets next to mine were taken by scouts 3/4 of our games. This season, they haven’t showed once.

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