Kicking off ACC conference play for the 2019-20 season, the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (6-7, 1-2 ACC) got off on the wrong foot as they traveled to Tallahassee, FL and fell to the #18 Florida State Seminoles (12-2, 2-1 ACC), 70-58. The loss drops them to below .500, and have lost 5 of their last 7.
Thanks in part to the length and defensive prowess from the Noles, Georgia Tech struggled with finding an offensive rhythm throughout most of the game. The Jackets turned the ball over 20 times for the 4th time this season (Arkansas, Ball State, Boise State), and had 9 of their field goal attempts blocked by the Noles. They particularly struggled defensively in the first half, turning it over 13 times during that span.
Leading the way offensively were sophomore guard Michael Devoe & Moses Wright as they both went 6-13 from the field. Devoe had 19 points and went 6-8 from beyond the arc (setting a career high for made threes in a game) and Wright was the lone player on either side with double digit rebounds (10).
Like they have for most of the season, Georgia Tech started out slow to begin the game. In the first 8 minutes, Tech was just 3-12 from the field and turned it over 6 times. Despite shooting just 11-29 (37.9%) and having an assist/turnover ratio of 6/13 in the first half, it was still fairly competitive. This was due to FSU shooting sub-40% as well (39.4%) and also having double digit first half turnovers with 10. As a result, neither team got on a run of more than 4 points and FSU possessed just a 31-29 halftime lead.
It continued to be back and forth, with the run in the first 10 minutes of the second half being separated by 1 point. However the turning point of the game was when junior forward Jordan Usher was assessed a flagrant 1 foul at the 10:03 point of the game. It was his second flagrant foul in as many games, as he was ejected in the game against Hawai'i after receiving a flagrant 2 foul. From that point on, the Seminoles went on a 21-13 run to end the game. In the second half as a whole, Florida State shot 53.3% and committed only 2 turnovers after turning it over 10 times in the first half.
Next up, Georgia Tech will wrap up their 5 game road trip against the North Carolina Tar Heels (8-5, 1-1 ACC) on Saturday, January 4th. Tip is set for 6:00pm and will be telecast on ACC Network.
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