by Mike Potter
CARMICHAEL ARENA/CHAPEL HILL It’s pretty sure to be a good battle when No. 4 seed Georgia Tech takes on No. 5 seed Georgetown in the second round of the NCAA Women’s Tournament on UNC’s home court.
These programs are almost mirroring each other at the moment.
Tech (25-8) has a senior class of five players that has the best four-year record in school history at 96-37.
Georgetown (23-8) has a senior class of seven players that has the best record in school history at 92-41.
And MaChelle Joseph’s Yellow Jackets have never been to a Sweet 16.
Until this time.
The Jackets take charge after the opening minutes and roll on to a comfortable 76-64 decision.
Tech never trails after Sasha Goodlett’s short jumper from Metra Walthour with 5:48 left in the first half makes it 24-23. The Jackets’ biggest lead is 15 points on four occasions over the final 4:12.
Tech freshman Sydney Wallace, who had never had a 20-point game until her 28-point effort in Sunday’s blowout win over Sacred Heart, finishes with 23 to lead all scorers. Walthour adds 15 points, Goodlett 14 with 11 rebounds and Chelsea Regins 13.
Sugar Rodgers finishes with 14 points for Georgetown while Tia Magee chips in 10.
Georgia Tech shoots 50 percent from the floor to Georgetown’s 33.8, winning the game despite the Hoyas’ 42-39 rebounding advantage. Georgetown commits 15 turnovers to Georgia Tech’s 17.
They said it …
Joseph: “I’m just thrilled to death for my players and the people at Georgia Tech. It’s a long time, very overdue, for Georgia Tech being in the Sweet 16 and for us to make history with this group of people. I’m very blessed to be surrounded by players that are committed to excellence both on the floor and off the floor. They deserve this. We paid the price to be successful and that’s why today we won out there.”
Georgetown coach Terri Williams-Flournoy: “That was a well-fought, hard, tough game for our young ladies. I thought they showed great character and continued to fight, and that’s what we’ve done all year. I think my seniors are being a little bit hard on themselves, but that’s how they are when they lose. They’re not going to pat each other on the back, they’re not going to give each other a whole lot of credit because it’s a loss. I’m getting a little emotional here because my seven seniors came in here and turned this program around.”
Goodlett: “Ever since we came in we wanted to do something special and leave our mark on this program. We came in thinking ‘We have to make it to the Sweet 16. We have to take this program somewhere it’s never been.’”
Wallace: “I just came out here with confidence. I just knew I had to step up for my senior leaders and play my role.”
What does it all mean?
That the Jackets have a huge challenge-slash-opportunity ahead of them, while the Hoyas can get ready for next season.
Stars of the game
Play of the game
Wallace’s 3-pointer to make it 50-38 with 14:18 to play.
Ga. Tech: Won 2.
Georgetown: Lost 1.
Georgia Tech vs. Baylor, Saturday in Des Moines, Iowa
Georgetown in 2012-13 season opener