Georgia Tech Basketball: Yellow Jackets Smack No. 23 Miami Hurricanes For First ACC Win


Brian Gregory and his Yellow Jackets (10-10, 1-7 ACC) had a lot of frustration built up after the near misses, blowout loss, poor shooting performances and criticism that came along with their 0-7 ACC start.

With all that noise going on, the Jackets took a trip to Corral Gables to face the No. 23 Miami Hurricanes (14-6, 4-3 ACC) and took out all their frustration on the Canes’ by a score of 70-50.

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets /

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

The Jackets got this win for all the players and coaches in that locker room.

This win was not for the fans, or writers like myself, who were watching this team look lost in the previous seven games and questioned the capabilities of everyone from the head coach to the ball boy.

This win was for the people who were putting the sweat in and believed in each other regardless of what we thought.

Georgia Tech played with a focus and intensity that clearly said, “this crap ends tonight!”.

They were in control of the game from the tipoff opening up with a 15-4 run.

The Jackets made it known that they were going to leave Miami with a twenty-point win, and there was nothing the Canes’ were going to do about it.

Tech held the Hurricanes to 34.5% shooting on their home floor.

Jim Larranaga’s squad could only hit 6 of 26 from downtown for the game.

These defensive numbers really are not a shock for fans. Tech fans already know that this team could defend.

The surprise comes from the 56.8% field goal shooting that the Yellow Jackets finished with at the end of the game.

Jan 28, 2015; Coral Gables, FL, USA; Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets guard Josh Heath (11) is pressured by Miami Hurricanes guard Angel Rodriguez (13) during the first half at BankUnited Center. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

The fact that offensively they looked crisp and sure about everything they did.

The shots that were taken were in the flow of the offense, and they were getting out on the break to get easy baskets when opportunities came.

The best thing about this win was that the Yellow Jackets avoided the eight minute drought.

When a slight lull came they made a defensive stop, got out on the break, and got points.

Marcus Georges-Hunt led with 24 points on 10-12 field goals. MGH was finishing at the rim early and often.

It did not matter if it was in the half-court or on breakouts, Georges-Hunt made it a point to get to the cup.

Chris Bolden was solid as well hitting 6 of 11 from the field to log his 13 points, and Demarco Cox held down the painted area finshing with 10 points and seven rebounds.

Brian Gregory did a good job of putting the right groups together at the right time. He even played a stretch where Marcus Georges-Hunt was playing the 4-spot.

The Jackets shut down the two top scorers for Miami all game long.

Canes’ guard Sheldon McClellan was held in check finishing with only six points, and Angel Rodriguez was shut completely out going o-8 from the field.

Tonye Jekiri was the only Canes’ player to finish in double-figures with 13 points and nine rebounds.

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Now that Brian Gregory and the Yellow Jackets have cracked the seal on the ACC win column for 2015, they need to  keep this focus and intensity up to move up in the standings.

There are enough games to try and salvage something out of this season as long as the Jackets take things one game at a time.

Next up for Georgia Tech is a date with the NC State Wolfpack at McCamish Pavilion on Saturday.