Wow. Wow. Wow. Wow. Wow.
6-0. 10-2. 35-11. 44-15. 70-47. 78-56. These are all real scores in this game. Georgia Tech just dominated the #6 team in the country from the opening whistle.
So what was most impressive? Was it Ben Lammers? He had 18 points and 11 rebounds as well as his usual direction of our offense and anchoring of our defense. Or was it Quinton Stephens making hustle play after hustle play and hitting rainbow threes? Or was it the defense that held FSU to their lowest point total of the season? Even Virginia couldn’t hold them below 60 and only one other team has held them below 70. Or was it the fact that Georgia Tech outrebounded the Seminoles by 15?
None of those. None of those were the most impressive thing today. Not with the way Josh Okogie played. Earlier this season Okogie set a Georgia Tech freshman record with 37 points. He almost beat his record today. Against the #6 team in the country.
He finished with only 35 points and 14 rebounds. Oh and he shot 10-17 from the field. And made some backdoor cuts that had me jumping around my apartment. Oh and he went 14-17 from the free throw line. He had some signature moments too. Like his breakaway dunk where he almost lifted off too early. Or his backdoor cut where he had to fight for the ball and then finished through the foul. Or that time he missed a jumper, then beat the four Seminoles in the paint (including 7’4” Christ Koumadje) to the rebound and put it back. He was all over the court today and I could not be more excited for the future with him. That future starts this year.
Outside of Okogie, Lammers, and Stephens, the Jackets did not get much scoring and they did not need it.
Florida State did not get anything going on offense. They went nearly 9 minutes without a field goal in the first half, and they weren’t getting to the line too much then either. Dwayne Bacon led the team with 12 points, but it took him 15 FGA to get there. Other starters did not do any better. Xavier Rathan-Mayes ended with just 5 points on 2-8 shooting while Jonathan Isaac managed just 6 points on 3-10 shooting. Florida State spent much of the first half trying to shoot their way out their slump, but it failed miserably and the Seminoles ended up just 6-25 from deep.
People might say that FSU came out flat because they are coming off one of the toughest stretches in the country, and that might be true. But Georgia Tech destroyed them in every facet of the game. They made one of the best teams in the country look silly. This is a team that is starting to fire on all cylinders.
There were plenty of big name recruits there tonight, and they could not have picked a better game to see what Tech is capable of being.
But forget about the future for a moment. We have a team that could make the tournament. It’s true. We have a pair of wins that are as good as almost any in the country. We have some tough losses, but if the Jackets keep playing like this, those will be forgotten by the time the tournament comes around.
They have another chance to pick up a big win this weekend as they welcome Notre Dame to McCamish on Saturday. The Fighting Irish will be looking to recover after a tough loss against Virginia. If you haven’t watched this team this year, you should start right now.