Anthony Edwards recorded his second straight double-double and a career-high 15 rebounds as Georgia (12-9, 2-6) beat the Texas A&M Aggies (10-10, 4-4) 63-48 Saturday afternoon in Stegeman Coliseum.
It was a rather slow start for both teams in the first ten minutes as the Aggies led, 12-9. Georgia was shooting 36 percent (4-11) and freshman Anthony Edwards had only shot the ball twice totaling two points.
Neither team was really on a roll in the minutes following as the Aggies lead 14-12 at the 7:59 mark. Even though the score was close, Georgia was getting whipped on the defensive side as they allowed the Aggies to grab seven offensive rebounds in seven minutes.
Georgia went cold on another scoreless drought without a field goal for 4:14 until Edwards broke the silence with 5:14 left. Texas A&M had a drought of their own going scoreless for exactly five minutes until Wendell Mitchell tied the game with a 3-pointer.
At the end the first half Georgia led, but it wasn’t pretty. The Bulldogs had 14 total turnovers in the first half and shot just 39 percent (9-23) compared to the Aggies’ 25 percent (8-32). Edwards led the team with nine points, followed by Sahvir Wheeler with seven.
Georgia opened up the second half with consecutive 3-pointers from Edwards and senior Jordan Harris. The Bulldogs jumped out to a 15-4 run in the first seven minutes of the second half as Texas A&M head coach Buzz Williams burned the rest of his three timeouts in that span.
Edwards got off to a hot start in the final half scoring 10 points in the first eight minutes. The Bulldogs were able to keep extending their lead with junior Rayshaun Hammonds coming in clutch with a few baskets of his own. Also, Freshman Mike Peake scored on back-to-back trips down the floor playing some valuable minutes.
With 3:23 left, Georgia was in complete control of the game up 56-42. Edwards added another seven points in the final three minutes as he finished leading Georgia in scoring with 29 points, 15 rebounds, and two assists. Hammonds was the Bulldogs’ second-leading scorer with eight.
“I’m thankful for the best PG in the country,” Edwards said looking at Sahvir Wheeler in their post-game press conference. “He always finds me when I’m open. I also want to thank all my teammates as well. We can compete with anybody when we play like we did today.”
The Aggies were led by Wendell Mitchell with 13 and Andre Gordon with ten. Texas A&M shot 32 percent from the field (19-59) as they shot 20 percent from beyond the arc.
Even with the win, Georgia shot just 40 percent (23-57) and turned the ball over 20 times. In the two recent losses to Missouri and Ole Miss, Georgia turned it over 12 and 16 times, respectively.
“We had 14 turnovers in the first half, and only 6 in the second,” Wheeler said. “Personally, we weren’t happy with how we were playing so in the second half we played more lose. It’s a 40-minute game, and I feel like we didn’t let our foot off the gas today.”
Aggies head coach Buzz Williams had some positive praise for Edwards post-game.
“He was very impactful in all aspects of the game today,” said Williams. “He was dominant in every category across the board today. His physicality is tremendous. I don’t look at him as being the number one or two pick. Coming in, I watched his tape and thought about how we could stop him. Sadly we couldn’t do that.”
What’s next for Georgia?
Georgia travels to Gainesville, FL to take on the Gators on Wednesday at 7 p.m.