Georgia counted this as a real game, but started out treating it like an exhibition. Morehouse counted it as an exhibition, but from the start played like its most important game of the season.
That led to a sloppy game in which Georgia rested a starter, subbed liberally, and trailed for much of the first half against a Division II team.
But Georgia still won comfortably, 86-72, in a game that counts in its record but not in the RPI, because Division II games don’t. Morehouse, which officially counted it as an exhibition, left without a win or a loss. Georgia counted the win to improve to 5-2, and now awaits a rather big non-conference game.
– Players of the game: Three players set new career highs, all off the bench. Kenny Paul Geno had 15 points, including four 3-pointers, a week after losing 15 pounds because of food poisoning. Freshmen guards Tyree Crump (16 points) and Jordan Harris (11 points) also had big moments, perhaps enough to increase their minutes going forward.
– Stat line of the game: Georgia’s bench players scored 52 points. In the first half, Georgia’s bench had 24 of the team’s 36 points.
– Turning point: Georgia was having trouble pulling away in the second half when its three newest players finally extended the lead: Freshman Jordan Harris stole a pass, dribbled downcourt and laid it in to give Georgia its first double-digit lead, 53-43, with 12:25 left. A minute later freshman Tyree Crump nailed a 3 to make it 56-46. Junior college transfer Pape Diatt’s basket added to the run, and then Crump hit another 3, making it a 15-point game.
– Injury note: Juwan Parker, the team’s starting small forward, was held out of the game . Parker missed the past year-and-a-half with Achilles problems, but the team said it was precautionary. Diatta started in his place.
– What’s next: Marquette visits Sunday at 2 p.m. in what could be a pivotal non-conference game for Georgia. The Bulldogs need to accumulate some non-conference wins for their NCAA resume’, and Marquette (which was 4-2 pending a home game Wednesday night) is regarded as another at-large NCAA candidate.
– Box score: Tyree Crump 16 points, Kenny Paul Geno 15 points, Yante Maten 14 points and 4 rebounds, Jordan Harris 11 points and 4 asasists, E’Torrion Wilridge 7 points, J.J. Frazier 6 points and 5 assists, Derek Ogbeide 6 points and 8 rebounds, Mike Edwards 3 points and 8 rebounds, Pape Diatta 2 points and 3 rebounds.
WHAT THE COACH SAID
“It’s good to get a win. I don’t think we played particularly well tonight, and that’s taking nothing away from coach Brewer’s team at Morehouse. But I don’t think we played as well as we had hoped we would play. Didn’t rebound the ball, and didn’t play with as much intelligence tonight, just played a little bit immaturely for my liking. But we did get the win, and we’ll learn from it and move forward.” – Georgia head coach Mark Fox