In a rare trip to New York City via the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets encountered what appeared to be a rim with a cover on it during the first half, and never recovered in a 77-67 loss at the hands of Ole Miss.
For reference, the Jackets began the night with an astonishingly bad shooting output in the first half, going 7-of-34 (20.6%) from the field, and 1-of-10 from 3 in the opening 20 minutes. That combined with a late 6-0 by the Rebels left Tech in a 35-21 hole at the halftime break, and that margin was simply too much to overcome.
After that 14-point deficit at the break, Ole Miss managed to lengthen the lead to 21 with just over 7 minutes to go in the game, and the late push from Brian Gregory and company came after this one was virtually academic. The offense was, unquestionably, the culprit in this 10-point defeat, as the Jackets finished the day having shot just 37% from the field and 63.6% from the free throw line while generating only 10 assists.
Solomon Poole, the sophomore guard from Jacksonville, Florida, was the lone bright spot on that end of the floor, coming off the bench to generate 24 points on just 14 shot attempts (including 5 of 8 from 3-point land). However, Poole’s push was mostly in the 2nd half, and the starters simply couldn’t keep the team afloat.
Trae Golden (4 for 12), Marcus Georges-Hunt (3 for 9), Robert Carter, Jr. (3 for 10), and Chris Bolden (1 for 8) all shot less than 35% from the field in the game, and while Carter, Jr. produced a double-double with 11 points and 12 rebounds, that simply isn’t going to cut it. As a group, they managed to hold the Rebels to only 43.5% shooting on the day while outrebounding them 43-39, but the inability to create consistent offense against a quality opponent is troubling.
Now, the Jackets will stay in Brooklyn for one more game, as they are set to square off in the “consolation” game against the loser of the Penn State/St. John’s match-up. It is only one loss on the schedule, but this one could be a monumental defeat when comparing résumés at the end of the season.