The Georgia Women’s basketball team hits the road to take on Alabama at 5 PM ET on Sunday in Tuscaloosa, AL. This is the Ladies second straight game on the road. The contest will air on the SEC Network.
Georgia Lady Bulldogs (13-4, 1-3 SEC) vs. Alabama Crimson Tide (12-5, 1-3 SEC)
Sunday, Jan. 16, 2016 | Foster Auditorium | Tuscaloosa, Ala. | 5 p.m. ET
TV: SEC Network – Jenn Hildreth Riehn (PBP) and Candace Parker (Analyst)
Radio: Georgia Bulldog Radio Network by IMG (Jeff Dantzler, PBP)
Follow the team on Twitter at: @UGA_WBB
Opening Tip — Five Things To Know
Georgia enters Sunday’s game after downing No. 20 Florida, 71-61, on the road this past Thursday. It marked UGA’s first win on the road against a ranked team since Feb. 3, 2013 — a 75-71 win against then-No. 8 Kentucky.
The Lady Bulldogs held the league’s top scoring team to their season-low of 61 points and just 33.8 percent shooting on Thursday. Georgia held Florida without a field goal for just over 12 minutes from the second quarter to midway though the third quarter, building as much as a 21-point lead.
Defense has been the key for Georgia this season. The Lady Bulldogs are second in the league in scoring defense, holding opponents to just 52.9 ppg. UGA leads the SEC in both FG pct. defense (33.3%) and 3-point FG pct. defense (24.8%). Georgia has held 16 of 17 opponents to 40 percent or lower shooting.
Junior guard/forward Pachis Roberts has drawn three-straight starts and is the team’s third-leading scorer in conference play, averaging 8.3 ppg. Teammate Halle Washington is coming off a career-high 17-point effort against No. 20 Florida. Washington scored six of her 17 in the fourth quarter.
Senior guards Tiaria Griffin and Shacobia Barbee have led the Lady Bulldogs this season. Griffin leads the team in scoring with 14.3 ppg, while Barbee ranks in the top-5 in the SEC in rebounding, steals and assists. Barbee is averaging a double-double in SEC games with 10.0 ppg and 11.3 rpg.
A Georgia Win Would …
Mark the first time since 2009-10 that Georgia has won back-to-back SEC road games in consecutive games since the 2009-10 season when UGA won at Mississippi State and Auburn.
Give Georgia its 25th win in the last 26 meetings against Alabama. The Lady Bulldogs are 14-5 all-time against the Crimson Tide in Tuscaloosa.
Be head coach Joni Taylor’s second SEC win in her head coaching career. Taylor led the Lady Bulldogs to a 71-61 win at Florida on Thursday for her first league victory.
Give Joni Taylor a victory over her alma mater. Taylor played at Alabama from 1997-01.
Overall: Georgia leads, 37-10
In Athens: Georgia leads, 17-3
In Tuscaloosa: Georgia leads, 14-5
Neutral Sites: Georgia leads, 6-2
Current Streak: Georgia, 1-0
Last Meeting: Georgia won, 64-47 (1/4/15) Athens
Alabama enters Sunday’s contest with just one player averaging in double figures — leading scorer Hannah Cook. The Crimson Tide has lost three-straight games, including its last outing against Auburn. Alabama began SEC play this season with a 62-45 victory against LSU.
Last Time Out
Junior forward Halle Washington scored a career-high 17 points as the Georgia Lady Bulldogs basketball team earned its first Southeastern Conference victory of the season defeating No. 20 Florida on the road, 71-61, Thursday night at the O’Connell Center.
With the win, Georgia moved to 52-15 all time against the Gators and 23-10 in games played in Gainesville. UGA held the Gators to a mere 33.8-percent shooting on the night while forcing Florida to commit 22 turnovers during the Gators’ season-low scoring output.
Georgia was led offensively by Tiaria Griffin with 23 points, including several clutch free throws down the stretch. Griffin was joined in double digit scoring by Washington and Pachis Roberts with 17 and 11 points, respectively.
“We took advantage of opportunities,” head coach Joni Taylor said. “Florida tried to get up and press us and take the ball out of Marjorie’s hands. Our other players were really good tonight and were really good at bringing the ball up the floor and attacking them and getting by their front line. We were able to use that and get easy buckets at the rim.”
Joni Taylor Returns To Alma Mater
Georgia head coach Joni Taylor returns to her Alma Mater on Sunday. Taylor played for the Crimson Tide from 1997-01. The 1997 Mississippi Gatorade Player of the Year helped the Rick Moody-led Crimson Tide to the NCAA Sweet 16 in 1998 and back to the NCAA Tournament in 1999.
Dogs Take Down Gators In The Swamp
Georgia held the 20th-ranked Florida Gators to their second-lowest shooting effort of the season as the Lady Bulldogs took down the Gators, 71-61, on the road Thursday night. Georgia led by as many as 21 points in the win as Florida shot just 29 percent in the first quarter, 28 percent in the second, 21 percent in the third and just 33.8 percent for the game.
Protecting The Ball
The Lady Bulldogs have committed fewer turnovers than their opponents in 13 of 17 games this season and are second in the SEC in fewest turnovers committed, averaging just 13.6 per game. Georgia also averages 17.1 assists per game, ranking second in the SEC in assist-to-turnover ratio this season.
Griffin Heating Up For The Lady Dogs
Senior guard Tiaria Griffin leads the Lady Bulldogs in scoring, averaging 14.3 points per game. Griffin has scored in double figures in three of the first four SEC games, including a team-high 23-point effort on the road at No. 20 Florida. In all, the Monticello, Miss., native has scored in double figures 12 times this season and has led Georgia in scoring six times. Griffin has hit at least one 3-point basket in every game this season and ranks third in the SEC in 3-pt. FGs made with 38.
Hempe Making A Difference
Senior forward Merritt Hempe, who has recorded four double-doubles through 17 games this season, is not only making her mark on the court but she is also playing a pivotal role in the community. Hempe has been nominated for the 2016 AllState WBCA Good Works Team for her efforts off the court.
The Fredericksburg, Va., native participates in numerous community service efforts, including Special Olympics Homeruns for Hometown Rivals baseball game, Toys for Tots, writing Holiday cards for deployed soldiers, helping provide safe routes to school by partnering with Barrow Elementary, providing toiletries collection for the homeless, visiting Stroud Elementary throughout the year to encourage and mentor children, is an Alzheimer’s Walk Volunteer and Ath-Half Volunteer, and volunteers as an AAU coach and operations staff member. The 2015-16 Good Works Team will be released in February.
56-Straight Is Nation’s Best
The Lady Bulldogs’ 56-game home non-conference win streak ranks as the top mark in NCAA DI women’s basketball. Georgia’s last loss at home vs. a non-conference team came in 2008 — a 56-44 loss to Xavier on Dec. 30, 2008. Georgia has gone eight-straight seasons with an undefeated home non-conference record.
Georgia has won 19-straight games against teams from the state of Georgia, including a 4-0 record this season. The Lady Bulldogs’ last loss to an in-state team came on Dec. 5, 2010 against Georgia Tech. Georgia is 104-35 all-time against NCAA Division I teams from the Peach State.
Books And Basketball For Butler
Georgia senior point guard Marjorie Butler is busy preparing for medical school as she completes her senior season. She entered college with over 50 hours of college credits, and is currently going through medical school interviews. The Knoxville, Tenn., native already has a degree in exercise science and will graduate with a second degree in biology this May.
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