Last Saturday, Georgia basketball went on the road, led for a majority of the game and lost to Florida in overtime. Against Texas A&M, the Bulldogs followed almost the same script, though in this case, they lost in regulation.
The Bulldogs turned the ball over four times in the final 80 seconds and the Aggies turned a late 9-point deficit into a 63-62 win.
The Bulldogs thought they had a chance to win the game, but the clock stopped with 5.6 seconds left without the referees noticing. Play continued and Yante Maten was fouled. But after a lengthy review, the officials deemed the foul occurred after the clock would’ve expired. The game was ended after the review.
Yante Maten was fouled going up for a shot, but a clock malfunction waves it off.
— Georgia Basketball (@UGABasketball) January 21, 2017
With the loss, Georgia falls to 12-7 and 4-3 in SEC play, while Texas A&M goes to 10-8 and 2-5 in conference games.
The Bulldogs were once again led by Yante Maten and J.J. Frazier. Maten finished with 19 points and 5 rebounds, while Frazier added 11 points and 5 assists.
Player of the game: Yante Maten
Maten led the Bulldogs in scoring, but he earned player of the game honors because of his defense on A&M’s Tyler Davis and Robert Williams. Both Aggies have NBA futures, but combined to shoot 9-of-22 from the field. And Maten stayed out foul trouble, while Mike Edwards, Juwan Parker, and Derek Ogbeide all fouled out of the game.
Maten also would’ve had a chance to win the game for Georgia had the clock not expired.
Stat line of the game: Georgia turnovers
The Bulldogs turned the ball over 17 times on Saturday, and four of them came on consecutive possessions at the end of the game. This allowed Texas A&M to go on a 10-0 run to end the game.
Texas A&M’s DJ Hogg summed up Georgia’s end of game strategy rather bluntly.
Hogg: They kept putting it in the corner. That's where we trap. They didn't handle the pressure very well. They pretty much gave it to us.
— TexAgs (@TexAgs) January 21, 2017
Turning point: 10-0 run to the end the game
The Bulldogs lead by 9 late in the game, but a 10-0 closing run allowed the Aggies to take a 63-62 lead, which proved to be the final margin.
The Bulldogs didn’t get a shot attempt to retake the lead, as the clock stopped with 5.6 seconds remaining in the game, but the officials failed to notice. After a review, the officials deemed that the foul on Maten came after the clock would’ve expired.
That's really bad. You could see JJ Frazier look at the clock and decide he had time to feed the post instead of shoot. Really really bad.
— Seth Davis (@SethDavisHoops) January 21, 2017
What Georgia basketball head coach Mark Fox said: On the end of the game
“Evidently, the clock stopped with 5.6 seconds and the clocked stopped for longer than 5.6 seconds,” Fox said. “So when J.J. (Frazier) looked up to see how much time he had to make a play, he sees time on the clock and makes a pass and Yante (Maten) draws a foul. But they (the referees) said when they timed it by a stopwatch, it stopped longer than what was left in the game and that the game should have been over.”
What’s next for Georgia basketball
The Bulldogs will be in Athens next week for two games Georgia needs to win if it’s going to continue to contend for an NCAA tournament bid. Georgia hosts Alabama on Wednesday and then Texas on Saturday in the Big 12-SEC Challenge. Win both, and the Bulldogs will be in good position heading into a tough two-game road stretch against Kentucky and South Carolina.