[break] [break] Although Georgia (17-8, 5-7 SEC) led by as many as 14 points in the second half, the Gators (12-12, 4-7 SEC) outscored the Lady Bulldogs 13-3 in the final three minutes of the game to take the lead with 1:15 on the clock.
[break] [break] Erika Ford paced the Lady Bulldogs throughout the night with 14 points. Mackenzie Engram and Halle Washington led the team in rebounds with eight a piece.
[break] [break] Florida had three double-digit scorers, and Cassie Peoples led the Gator’s campaign with 11 points. Carlie Needles and January Miller each added 10 points.
[break] [break] Both teams shot similarly from the field, the line and the arc, but it was Georgia’s turnovers that proved key to outcome of the game. The Gators scored 27 points off of 28 Lady Bulldog miscues, while Georgia managed 14 points from 17 Florida turnovers.
[break] [break] The Lady Bulldogs suffered a major loss with 16:57 to play as Krista Donald went down on the court with a left ankle sprain. Donald, a starter for Georgia, finished the game with three points and six rebounds.
[break] [break] “I thought that we played hard and that we played through the circumstances of losing Krista,” head coach Andy Landers said. “We survived that little stint, but we played hard and played reasonably well defensively. But we made 28 turnovers. I can’t ever remember winning a game in the Southeastern Conference making 28 turnovers and some of them are really hard to understand.”
[break] [break] Florida scored the opening basket and led the game for the opening 41 seconds, but a Tiaria Griffin 3-pointer gave the Lady Bulldogs their opening points and lead. Pachis Roberts then dropped a 3 to spark an 8-0 Georgia run over 1:14 which allowed the Lady Bulldogs to surge ahead early.
[break] [break] Georgia’s defensive effort in the first half allowed the Lady Bulldogs to maintain control before the break. Georgia recorded six steals, two each from Washington and Ford, and out-rebounded the Gators 23-16 with 16 of those coming on the opposite end of the court. The Lady Bulldogs led by as many as 12 points in the opening stanza after a layup by Marjorie Butler that was set up on a steal and assist from Ford. Georgia held a 27-19 advantage at the half.
[break] [break] Although the Lady Bulldogs controlled the game in the opening minutes of the second period, Florida began its rally at the 14:19 mark with a steal from Peoples and a 3-pointer from Brooke Copeland. The Gators used a 12-2 run to draw within four, but both teams went stale with 8:55 to play.
[break] [break] A defensive rebound from Roberts allowed Haley Clark to end the scoring drought for Georgia at the 5:07 mark by driving up the lane and knocking in a jumper. On the Gators’ next possession, Clark returned the favor, grabbing a defensive board that resulted in a 3-pointer from Roberts.
[break] [break] With 4:18 to play, the Lady Bulldogs held a nine-point advantage that dwindled quickly as Florida forced Georgia to turn the ball over multiple times. The Gators took the lead on a People’s 3-pointer with 1:15 to play and shot 4-for-5 from the free throw line in the final minute. Ford sunk a long shot from behind the arc with sixth-tenths of a second on the clock to put Georgia within a point of the lead, but it was too late for the Lady Bulldogs to record the win.
[break] [break] “The biggest thing I think we can take from this loss is to come back swinging,” Clark said.
[break] [break] The Lady Bulldogs will travel to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, for an 8 p.m. matchup with LSU on Thursday, Feb. 19, before returning home for their final two home games of the regular season. Georgia will face Auburn on Feb. 22 and Tennessee on Feb. 26 to close their Stegeman Coliseum competition and then face the Gators in a rematch in Gainesville on March 1 in the regular-season finale.
[break] [break] Single-game reserved seat tickets for Lady Bulldog games are $5 for adults and $3 for children. UGA students, faculty and staff are admitted to all Lady Bulldog games free of charge with a valid UGA Card. Faculty and staff should pick up tickets at the Coliseum box office. Students are admitted to the arena via the entrance to the left of the box office by showing their UGA Card.
[break] [break] Single-game tickets are on sale via georgiadogs.com, by calling 877-542-1231 or in person at the UGA Ticket Office in the Butts-Mehre Heritage Hall from 8:30-4:30 on weekdays. In addition, single-game tickets go on sale at the Stegeman Coliseum box office (closest to Sanford Drive) beginning 60 minutes before tip-off of every home game.
[break] [break] Georgia Lady Bulldog Basketball
[break] Post-Game Notes & Quotes
[break] No. 24/NR Georgia vs. Florida
[break] Thursday, February 12, 2015 • Stegeman Coliseum • Athens, Ga.
• Georgia is now 50-15 all-time versus Florida, including a 27-4 mark in Athens.
• The loss also marks only the second time in head coach Andy Landers’ 36 seasons at Georgia that the Lady Bulldogs have lost five straight games with the previous five-game drought occuring between Feb. 5-22, 2008.
• Tiaria Griffin attempted 10 three-point field goals tonight to move within four of Rachel Powell for No. 9 among UGA’s career leaders.
• Haley Clark made her first career start tonight for the Lady Bulldogs becoming the 76th freshman to start in Landers’ 36 seasons at Georgia. The list includes current Lady Bulldogs Krista Donald, Erika Ford, Shacobia Barbee, Tiaria Griffin, Halle Washington, Mackenzie Engram, and Haley Clark.
• Halle Washington grabbed a game-high eight rebounds (along with Mackenzie Engram) in the contest, tying a career high previously versus Kennesaw State (12/15/13) and Presbyterian (11/10/13).
• Merritt Hempe missed tonight’s game due to illness.
• Krista Donald left the game in the second half with a left ankle sprain and did not return.
[break] [break] Lady Bulldogs In Double Digits
• Erika Ford tallied a team-high 14 points. This marks the second time this season Ford has led Georgia in scoring and fourth time she’s scored in double digits this season and 30th time in her career.
Georgia Head Coach Andy Landers
[break] [break] On his team’s performance tonight…
“I thought that we played hard and that we played through the circumstances of losing Krista (Donald). It really put us in a tough spot because Mackenzie (Engram) was in foul trouble and we had to move a guard (Pachis Roberts) into the ‘4’ spot who does not know the ‘4’ spot. And we survived that little stint, but we played hard and played reasonably well defensively. We rebounded terrifically, we out shot them from the floor, we out shot them from the three and we tied with them in free throws. But, we made 28 turnovers. I can’t ever remember winning a game in the Southeastern Conference making 28 turnovers and some of them are really hard to understand.”
[break] [break] On the play of the underclassman…
“Our younger players are going to step up and deliver. They can’t not deliver. They have to step up and help this basketball team get well.”
[break] [break] On the team’s attitude…
“They need to develop a different attitude. This is a competitive situation. This is do or die, you don’t have a choice. You either deliver or you don’t. And if you don’t, it’s real bad. This goes for everybody on the basketball team. We are down to numbers as such where everybody has to go out and do their very best every night for us to have a chance to win.”