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Louisiana Tech463379
Georgia274471
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71


Louisiana Tech (28-7) at Georgia (20-13)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Saturday, March 22, 11 a.m. (ET)

FACTS & STATS: Site: Stegeman Coliseum (10,523) -- Athens, Georgia. Television: ESPN. NIT Record: Louisiana Tech 9-7, Georgia 12-11. Series Record: Georgia leads, 1-0.

GAME NOTES: The Louisiana Tech Bulldogs will try to keep their season alive as they square off with the Georgia Bulldogs in the second round of the National Invitation Tournament at Stegeman Coliseum.

Louisiana Tech had high hopes of reaching the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1991 after finishing its first season as a member of the Conference USA in a four-way tie for first place. However, the Bulldogs were defeated by the eventual conference tournament champion Tulsa Golden Hurricane in the semifinals. Coach Michael White's squad survived its first round matchup versus Iona, defeating the Gaels, 89-88, thanks to a putback layup by starting point guard Kenneth Smith in the closing seconds of the contest.

Georgia ended its regular season with four wins in five games and went on to defeat Ole Miss in the first round of the SEC Tournament. However, it ran out of steam and dropped a 12-point decision to Kentucky its next time out. Coach Mark Fox and his team regroup on Wednesday with a 63-56 victory over Vermont at Stegeman Coliseum, where the Bulldogs have gone 15-2 this season. Georgia's triumph over the Catamounts marked its 20th win of the campaign, giving it just its second 20-win season in the past 12 years.

This will be just the second meeting in history between these schools. Georgia won the first meeting, 42-34, which took place during the 1977-78 campaign.

On the season, LA Tech is averaging 81.3 ppg on 45.5 percent efficiency from the floor while limiting its opposition to a mere 66 ppg on 41.3 percent shooting from the field. The Gaels held the Bulldogs to an 8-of-26 clip from 3- point range in the opening round, but six players scored in double-figures for LA Tech in the decision. Smith tallied 14 points, six assists and five steals, while Jaron Johnson and Kenyon McNeail tied for the team-high with 15 points each. Smith's five steals improved his career total to 186, which leaves the junior guard just five shy from tying the program record. Chris Anderson stepped up his play against Iona to record his third career double- double with 13 points and 10 boards.

Georgia has a much more defensive-minded approach as it posts only 68.8 ppg, but allows just 66.4 ppg. Although Fox's Bulldogs are converting only 68.4 percent of their free-throw attempts this season, they managed to sink a season-high 92 percent (24-for-26) at the charity stripe versus Vermont. Charles Mann scored 12 of his 29 points at the free-throw line and Marcus Thornton went 4-of-7 from the field and made all eight of his attempts at the charity stripe en route to 16 points. Georgia's second-leading scorer, Kenny Gaines, struggled on his way to seven points.

Georgia committed 22 turnovers in its win over Vermont. It can not afford to be as careless against LA Tech, which ranks fourth nationally with 317 steals. The Bulldogs that come out on top will advance to face the winner of Sunday's second round matchup between Florida State and Georgetown.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Louisiana Tech 73, Georgia 69

03/22 10:15:37 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
CAR 2
STL 3
Final
PHI 103
MIN 94
Final
BOS 87
HOU 93
Final
ATL 105
POR 99
Final
CLE 101
SAC 90
Final
BRK 122
TOR 127
Final
MIA 72
DAL 93
Final
NOP 108
LAC 103
4th
UTA 106
GSW 93
 
2nd
PHO 32
CHI 25
 
Final
PRIN 72
HARV 75
 
Final
CORN 57
BRO 49
 
Final
PENN 58
DART 51
 
Final
NIAG 61
MAR 65
 
Final
CAN 63
QUIN 57
 
Final
MAN 87
SIENA 79
 
Final
WILL 63
IUPUI 59
 
Final
FAIR 59
MON 60
 
Final
ARST 67
OREG 68
Final
CLMB 59
YALE 63
 
2nd
BUF 51
KSU 25
 
2nd
ARZ 24
ORST 13
 
Final
NJD 1
PIT 2
Final
CAR 2
STL 3
3rd
COL 2
NAS 0
 
2nd
ANA 0
CHI 1