The University of Georgia women’s basketball team snapped a five-game losing streak in Southeastern Conference openers with its 63-50 victory over LSU in its SEC opener Thursday night in Stegeman Coliseum.
With this win, the Lady Bulldogs improve their record at home to 9-0 and 10-4 overall.
Three Lady Bulldogs scored in double-digits. Senior Caliya Robinson paced all scorers with 16 points, while sophomore Gabby Connally and redshirt-sophomore Jenna Staiti recorded 13 points apiece. Redshirt-junior Taja Cole finished the game with nine points and nine assists.
“You want to win at home, [and] the SEC is so tough,” Georgia head coach Joni Taylor said. “Every game is so stingy, and any time you get a win you are happy with it. To win at home and to start off SEC play with a win is what you want to do.”
The Lady Bulldogs continued their unselfish play on offense, with six players contributing to the 63 points scored by Georgia. In the first half, Georgia was efficient on both sides of the ball, shooting 58 percent from the field and forcing 11 LSU turnovers that resulted in 19 points for the Lady Bulldogs. Georgia’s defense successfully contained Ayana Mitchell, LSU’s leading scorer and rebounder. Mitchell finished the first half with only two rebounds and failed to score.
In the first quarter, Cole had a hand in 10-of-23 points scored by Georgia, tallying two assists and three baskets from the field. Cole recorded six assists in the first half alone, contributing to her SEC-leading total assists on the season.
Connally knocked down three baskets from the three-point line to tie a Georgia season high. The San Antonio native scored in double-digits for the sixth game this season. Staiti finished her first SEC game with a team-high nine rebounds while also shooting 71 percent from the field.
While LSU began gaining momentum in the second half, the Lady Bulldogs led for all 40 minutes. After the Tigers cut Georgia’s lead to four points, Cole hit a three-point shot at the buzzer to send Georgia into the fourth period leading 46-39. Two three-pointers from Connally and Robinson regained Georgia’s double-digit lead in the fourth, eventually helping to seal its 63-50 victory over LSU.
Georgia will travel to Nashville, Tennessee, to face Vanderbilt on Sunday, Jan. 6, at 3 p.m. on SECN+.