McCAMISH PAVILION — This was unequivocally the worst game I have personally seen Georgia Tech Women’s Basketball play in my three seasons covering the team. Notre Dame came into McCamish and made Tech look like a high school team. The Irish beat Tech 85-48 crucially due to what has to be a historically long 26-point run lasting over 10 minutes of game time between the first and second quarters.
“Sports is a crazy thing in the sense that you’re dealing with young people and you think you’re prepared to play, and then the bottom drops out,” said Georgia Tech Head Coach Nell Fortner of the loss.
That bottom was the mentioned 26-point run during which Tech went 0-18 from the field, slipping to a 35-9 deficit.
Notre Dame wasn’t even playing with a whole squad, as their junior star Olivia Miles was out with injury, leaving their standout freshman Hannah Hidalgo to carry the load.
Tech quite honestly made life easy for Hidalgo, who scored 35 points with eight assists. During the 26-point run, Tech religiously turned the ball over giving Hidalgo easy transition buckets to grow the Irish lead.
It wasn’t like Tech wasn’t getting open shots though. Tech had one more field goal attempt than Notre Dame at halftime, but they could not sink anything to put an ounce of pressure on Notre Dame. By the game’s end, they had 34 attempts from three, making 18% of them.
Overall, Notre Dame beat Tech down low, in jump shooting, rebounding, in ball security, with their size, their pace, you name it. They completely dominated every phase of the game.
Tech’s first three minutes were a great look against a good team with Augustinaite hitting an opening three, Kara Dunn getting a second chance bucket, and then Blackshear completing a great transition score to put Tech up 7-6.
And that’s about all Tech did that was remotely good. Notre Dame went on a 22-2 run over the final 6:56 of the quarter. Tech missed 12 straight shots, most of them three point attempts, and turned the ball over five times. Noguero’s full court heave at the buzzer looked more of a pissed off shoved than a real attempt at hitting the shot.
2nd Quarter (28-9 ND)
Notre Dame’s run lasted until the 6:11 point in the 2nd when Tonie hit a floater, ending the 26-0 Irish run. Morgan’s bucket sadly didn’t unlock the magical run Tech would’ve needed to make the quarter competitive at all. Hidalgo scored 10 points in the quarter where Notre Dame only outscored Tech 18-8.
To give a sense of how bad things were, this is what I tweeted instead of the actual score at halftime:
Halftime— From the Rumble Seat (@FTRSBlog) February 2, 2024
ND - 46
GT - [a rational, whole integer with an absolute value less than 46]
Second Half (46-17 ND)
I have never seen the entire second half of a game be garbage time with Tech on the losing end, but this was the night for that. Tech at least did put up double digits in the third and fourth quarters, even outscoring the Irish 17-16 in the fourth when the game was very very over. Notre Dame’s lead did go over 40 points multiple times in the fourth quarter. Maybe that’s the small victory here, we at least prevented that loss.
Points: Hannah Hidalgo (ND) - 35
Assists: Hannah Hidalgo (ND) - 8
Rebounds: Kayla Blackshear (GT) - 11
Turnovers: Tonie Morgan (GT) - 5
Georgia Tech Women’s Basketball next plays on Sunday, February 4 at Wake Forest at 2 p.m.
Jack Purdy is a non-revenue sports writer and co-host of Scions of the Southland for From the Rumble Seat. He previously served as The Technique’s assistant sports editor before graduating Georgia Tech in 2022. Follow Jack on Twitter @JackNicolaus