Yellow Jackets Continue For School History
It was a game to prove the season is still worth fighting for. Just two days after hearing Georgia Tech had withdrawn its appeal and accepted the NCAA's postseason ban, the Yellow Jackets didn't falter, but instead made a statement with a 73-57 win over the Pittsburgh Panthers.
Wednesday night's matchup against the Panthers was not only Tech's final home game of the 2019-20 season, but it was Senior Night as well. Both seniors C James Banks and G Shembari Phillips had shining moments in their last game at McCamish Pavilion. Banks tested the Panthers offense by deflecting and hindering shots, rebounding, and totaling four steals for the night. Phillips began the night in the starting line up in place of G Jose Alvarado, his first start of the season. Phillips gave the Jackets their final points of the night by sinking in a three pointer.
The game started sloppy for the Yellow Jackets who in the first five minutes of the game already had three turnovers. An Alvarado three that put Georgia Tech ahead 10-4 would help spark the Jackets scoring momentum. Alvarado would give Tech their largest lead in the first half (30-12) following a fast break lay-up on a G Xavier Johnson turnover.
Each team would tally 18 turnovers for the night, but the Jackets would overcome with their 10 steals.
The Panthers threatened in the first few minutes of the second half when a pair of free throws made by Justin Champagnie would inch them within 4 points. But the Yellow Jackets answered with an under-the-basket Jordan Usher dunk. F Evan Cole joined in with two dunks of his own in the second half. Back-to-back Michael Devoe three's would extend Georgia Tech's lead by 19. From there, the Jackets would run away with the victory.
Alvarado led the Tech with 23 points, 9 rebounds, and 5 assists. Together, Jackets would have 20 assists on 27 made field goals (49.1%). Pitt would only make 30.9% of their shots from the field and were 17-25 on the free throw line.
The win over Pittsburgh secures a .500 conference record for Georgia Tech, their first time since the 2006-07 season. Jackets have won their last six ACC home games, its first six-game winning streak in ACC play at home since the 1995-96 season.
What's Next: Jackets wrap up the 2019-20 season on Friday night when they travel to take on the Clemson Tigers. Tipoff is at 7:00 pm EST.
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