Daily Dawg Thread: January 16, 2024

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Daily Dawg Thread: January 16, 2024

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MBB: Georgia (12-4, 2-1 SEC) vs. South Carolina (14-2, 2-1 SEC) – Tonight’s Game Notes

Watch a fullscreen slideshow HERE.

Game 17: Georgia (12-4, 2-1 SEC) vs. South Carolina (14-2, 2-1 SEC)

Date: Tuesday, January 16





Time: 9:00 p.m. ET

Venue: Colonial Life Arena (18,000)

Location: Columbia, S.C.





Series History: SC leads, 63-59

Last Meeting: SC, 61-55, on 3/1/23

TV: ESPNU (Roy Philpott, play-by-play; Daymeon Fishback, color analyst)

Radio: Georgia Bulldog Network – SiriusXM 387 (Scott Howard, play-by-play; Chuck Dowdle, color analyst; Adam Gillespie, producer)

The Starting Five

• Georgia makes the roughly three-hour trek on I-20 to Columbia, S.C, to face South Carolina on Tuesday evening. The Bulldogs are 2-0 on the road this season, besting Florida State and Missouri.

• Georgia entered the week ranked No. 19 nationally in bench points. The Bulldogs’ bench has outscored the its opponents’ reserves in 15 of 16 games this season (every contest other than the season opener against Oregon) and sports a scoring margin of +224 (+14.0 ppg).

• After shooting 34.4 percent and making 8.0 3-pointers per game in non-conference play, Georgia is shooting 39.8 percent (+5.5 percent) on knocking down 11.7 3s per game (+3.7 3pg) in SEC action.

• Georgia’s 10-game winning streak, the Bulldogs’ longest since the 1947-48 season, was snapped with last Saturday’s setback to No. 5 Tennessee.

• Georgia was the nation’s only Power conference team to face four Power conference foes in its first five outings. Of those, Oregon and Providence are featured in the most recent edition of ESPN’s bracketology, while Miami and Wake Forest are the “first teams out” of the projected bracket.

The Opening Tip

Georgia travels to South Carolina on Tuesday night for a 9:00 p.m. matchup between the Bulldogs and the Gamecocks at Colonial Life Arena. 

Georgia is 12-4 overall and 2-1 in SEC play following Saturday’s loss to No. 5 Tennessee before a raucous sellout crowd at Stegeman Coliseum. The setback snapped a pair of 10-game winning streaks – both overall and at home – for the Bulldogs. Georgia’s 10-game streak also was the fourth-longest in the nation when it ended.

Georgia is looking to continue a more modest string of success – a two-game road winning streak – in Columbia. The Bulldogs bested Florida State, 68-66, on Nov. 29 in the inaugural ACC/SEC Challenge and then opened SEC play with a 75-68 win at Missouri.

Following a 21-point outburst against the Vols, Jabri Abdur-Rahim slipped past Noah Thomasson atop Georgia’s scoring leaders for the season. The senior from South Orange, N.J., is contributing 12.9 ppg, with a single bucket providing the difference between him and Thomasson’s 12.8 ppg average. Abdur-Rahim sports team-leading shooting percentages of .427 from 3-point range and and SEC-best .895 at the free throw line.

Two points separate the Bulldogs’ third- and fourth-leading scorers as well, with RJ Melendez averaging 9.6 ppg and Justin Hill chipping in 9.5 ppg. Hill has been the best Bulldog in distributing points to teammates. The senior from Houston leads Georgia in assists at 3.5 apg and entered this weed ranked No. 5 in the SEC and No. 46 in the nation in assist-to-turnover ratio at 2.74.

Among UGA’s career leaders…

Jabri Abdur-Rahim is

• 5 3FGs from No. 18 Sundiata Gaines

• 6 3FGs from No. 17 Rashad Wright

• 10 3FGs from No. 16 Turtle Jackson

• 34 3FGAs from No. 19 Michael Chadwick

Career statistics wise…

Justin Hill is

• 34 points from 1,200

RJ Sunahara is

• Playing in his 100th career game against South Carolina

• 1 FGAs from 1000

Noah Thomasson is

• 2 assists from 250

Scouting The Gamecocks

South Carolina enters Tuesday’s game at 14-2 overall and 2-1 in the SEC. The Gamecocks are a perfect 9-0 at home this season.

Meechie Johnson leads South Carolina and is ranked No. 6 in the SEC  in scoring at 17.1 ppg. He leads a trio of Gamecocks scoring at a double-digit pace along with B.J. Mack at 13.4 ppg and Miles Stute at 10.2 ppg.

Ta’Lon Cooper paces South Carolina and among SEC leaders is ranked No. 3 in assists (4.31 apg) and No. 2 in assist-to-turnover ratio (3.83).

Series History With S. Carolina

South Carolina leads the all-time series with Georgia, 63-59, including a 39-19 advantage in Columbia. The Bulldogs and Gamecocks split two meetings last season, with each team winning at home.

Most recently last March 1 in Columbia, Georgia dropped a 61-55 decision in the regular-season finale.

Georgia trailed by one with four seconds left before the Gamecocks converted on 5-of-6 free throws to round out the scoring. Following eight ties and seven lead changes, the Gamecocks went up for good on a pair of free throws with 40 seconds remaining in the clock.

Earlier on Jan. 28 in Athens, Georgia defeated the Gamecocks, 81-78, in overtime to snap a 12-game losing skid to South Carolina.

Mardez McBride came off the bench to score what was then a season-high 17 points and lead Georgia at a sold-out Stegeman Coliseum.

Kario Oquendo added 16 points, Frank Anselem notched a career-best 12 points and Terry Roberts chipped in 10.

Georgia rallied from a double-digit deficit with 6:31 remaining to force overtime and then improve to 11-1 at home on the season. A three-point play by Oquendo at the 6:23 mark started a 10-0 surge that knotted the score at 62-62 just 68 seconds later.

Oquendo scored all eight of Georgia’s points in OT, including going 6-of-8 from the line.

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Greg is closing in on 15 years writing about and photographing UGA sports. While often wrong and/or out of focus, it has been a long, strange trip full of fun and new friends.