Georgia loses a heartbreaker in Oxford

With 3.8 seconds remaining in the game, Georgia got the ball into Charles Mann’s hands near half court, providing the Dawgs with a chance at a  reasonable last second shot.  Mann’s pass to Kenny Gaines was deflected, though, forcing Gaines to take an off-balanced three-pointer that careened off the rim, giving Mississippi the 72-71 home win.

UGA yielded 29 points to Stefan Moody, though none were bigger than the two he hit to send his team up by one with less than 4 seconds remaining (even though it appeared as though he needed three steps to get that basket).

The Dawgs put up a gutty effor on the road, falling just short in Oxford on Saturday night.  Georgia played the final stretch of this one without its star player, Yante Maten, who fouled out with 3:36 remaining in the game; Maten left with a team-high 20 points and 9 rebounds, his team clinging to a 64-62 lead.

Neither team shot the ball well in Oxford on Saturday, with both squads hitting just 36% from the floor.  Charles Mann and Kenny Gaines were the only other Bulldogs to finish in double-figures for Coach Mark Fox, scoring 15 and 14, respectively.  Gaines’s points, however, came at the expense of a 3 for 14 shooting performance.

Georgia looked like it was going to get run out of the gym early, falling behind 19-11 with 12:50 left before the break after a layup by Rashad Brooks.

The Dawgs didn’t flinch, though. Rather, UGA responded with an impressive 16-2 run, capped off by a pair of free throws from Charles Mann that gave Georgia a 27-21 advantage. The Dawgs would go on to take a 44-35 lead into the intermission.

But Georgia went ice cold in the second half, hitting just 7 of its 24 field goal attempts.  Slowly but surely, Ole Miss cut into the UGA lead until it had been whittled down to nothing.

The biggest bright spot off the Georgia bench had to be Derek Ogbeide, who scored 9 points to go along with his 10 boards, falling just a basket shy of his first career double-double.  The Rebels opted not to guard starter Houston Kessler from the outside, which leaves one wondering just how long he will continue to see more minutes than Ogbeide, who seems far more productive than the senior at this point in the season.

This loss leaves UGA at 1-2 in conference, and it’s going to sting for a bit.  The Dawgs appeared to be on their way to their first SEC road win of the season before Moody knifed his way to the basket and put his team on top.

Georgia will need to get over this loss quickly, though,  as they have two difficult home games on the horizon next week against Tennessee and #21 Texas A&M.

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7 thoughts on “Georgia loses a heartbreaker in Oxford

  1. Really disappointing tonight. Moody definitely traveled. The technical foul on Geno was absurd. Yante’s fifth foul was also ridiculous. Ole Miss has a good team but it is REALLY tough to win on the road with so many things working against them.

    Really pleased overall with the Dawgs’ effort. I agree with you that the next two are very important. The Vols are vulnerable. A&M is really good but at home we have to pull it out.

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    1. Thanks for pointing out two or three of the ridiculous calls (and a huge non-call) by the zebras in this one. I was beginning to wonder if all this was my sour-grapes imagination. And while we competed till the end, we did not show the mental toughness on defense during the last five minutes that saved our butts in so many of our close games last year. Despite the good words from Fox and Hoop about our play, I quite frankly was very disappointed with our resolve late.

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  2. Let’s get Kessler where he belongs before the next tip off! Ogbide is providing a nice inside force now that his feet are wet! Moody didn’t take 3 steps, he took 4! I could not find attendance figures listed after the Mizzou game! We need 10,526 for the games this week! Are we going to support this team or what?

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  3. There were some bad calls. The Maten call was awful. The Moody traveling call, well, you’re just not going to get that call on the road with the game on the line. Even so, this was Georgia’s game to win and they let it slip away. Inside 3 minutes, Mann made one of two free throws, Gaines made one of two, while Moody sank both of his. Gaines also had a great look at a 3 inside :30 and clunked it. Kessler had the ball snatched out of his twice in the last 5 minutes. I’m sure he’s a nice young man, but Georgia is playing 4 on 5 when he’s out there. Not sure what Fox sees in him. Might not be a costly loss if Georgia can steal one (or two) on the road.

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    1. Agreed. Although Kessler will occasionally do something of value, 3 of 4 times it’s negative: whether it’s a feeble attempt on the boards, a clunk shot, or a turnover. Alec Kessler started his career similarly and turned out to be amazing. Hope Houston can have similar development. PACK THE STEG!

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  4. We are not going to win games with Maten on the bench down the stretch. Keeping him out of foul trouble will be the key to our season. Another reason to play Ogbide over Kessler is he can help Maten body up and share the foul load.

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  5. We probably need to beat both UT and A&M at home this week if we want another top 4 finish in the SEC. Huge games and I agree with Mike we need full fan support!

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