Georgia shoots lights out in New Orleans for SEC tourney win

NEW ORLEANS – Dustin Ware didn’t get the 16 points he needed to reach 1,000 for his career. But he got something more important – a chance to play again.

Ware did manage 13 points, however, and along with the 23 of fellow guard Gerald Robinson, the veteran back court was a big reason Georgia was able to defeat Mississippi State 71-61 and advance to the second round of the SEC Tournament.

“Dustin’s had a tough year but he shot it well tonight,” Georgia coach Mark Fox said. “I thought he and Gerald played like experienced players, like seniors should play. We had a lot of guys make plays to win tonight. I thought they all felt good about seeing a teammate chip in.”

It was particularly uplifting for Ware, who has been mired in a long shooting slump.

“I wanted to be aggressive,” said Ware, who was scoreless at the half. “Teammates, coaches, they all kept a lot of confidence in me and really kept me going. I saw a few go down and it really felt good.”

Ware was 3-of-6 from behind the arc as Georgia shot 51 percent from the field and 36.8 (7-for-19) from 3-point range. The Bulldogs had five players score in double figures for just the second time this season. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope had 13 and Donte Williams and Nemanja Djurisic had 11 apiece. Djurisic, a freshman from Montenegro, also had 11 rebounds to give UGA its first double-double from a post player this season.

The Bulldogs (15-16) will now face Vanderbilt for a third time this season. The Commodores (21-10), who had a first-round bye, defeated Georgia in their two regular-season meetings. Tip off is 10 p.m.

“Vandy’s a great shooting team,” Georgia coach Mark Fox said. “We can’t play them the same way we’ve been playing because it hasn’t worked. We’ve got to do something different.”

The Commodores got 28 points on 6-of-8 3-point shooting from guard John Jenkins when they last met Georgia and won 61-52 on Feb. 19 in Athens. They beat the Bulldogs 77-66 on Jan. 14 in Nashville.

It was the second time this season the Bulldogs knocked off Mississippi State (21-11, 8-8). The Maroon Dogs were ranked 20th when Georgia beat them in overtime 70-68 on Feb. 11. The latest loss likely will eliminate MSU from NCAA tournament consideration.

The Bulldogs dominated State in the second half Thursday, outscoring it 40-32 and leading by as many as 13 points. But State’s Jalen Steele scored 11 of his team-best 19 points in a two-minute stretch that saw the Maroons close to within 60-57 with 3:46 to go.

However, Georgia answered every challenge from then until the final buzzer. Williams missed a 15-foot jump shot as the shot-clock wound down, but Djurisic was there to bail him out with a rebound and put-back to get the lead back to five. Georgia’s defense forced a pair of State turnovers and Djurisic made two free throws to expand the lead to seven with 1:38 to go.

Then Robinson made the play of the game. With the lead back down to five and the shot-clock again running out, he pulled up off the drive and buried a 12-foot jump shot on the right side of the lane that made it 68-59 with 58 seconds to play.

“It was good to see that one go down,” Robinson said. “I missed a couple of midrange, east shots earlier in the game. I felt like everybody was shooting the ball very well other than me.”

Georgia was able to make foul shots the rest of the way to salt away the victory.

“I give Georgia credit; I thought they played awfully well,” State coach Rick Stansbury said. “I thought they jumped up and made shots when they needed to make shots.”

Now the Bulldogs will have to turn around and play another game in fewer than 22 hours.

“The turnaround is not really a concern,” Fox said. “These guys play back-to-back all the time in practice. Gerald has a body where he can play 40 minutes every night.”

Said Caldwell-Pope: “We used to play back-to-back all the time in AAU. I’m just looking at it as another AAU game.”

96 comments Add your comment

Dawg Fan

March 9th, 2012
12:51 am

Great game. Let’s take out Vandy!!

TR

March 9th, 2012
12:54 am

Way to go Dawgs!

kingdaddy

March 9th, 2012
12:58 am

Way to go Dawgs

Louisville Brave

March 9th, 2012
1:04 am

Nice win dawgs. We looked good.

kingdaddy

March 9th, 2012
1:06 am

Nothing like getting hot in the SEC Tournament! The third time’s the charm for Vandy. Take it one game at a time and run the table.

Sargent Carter

March 9th, 2012
1:11 am

Mark Fox is a helluva basketball coach and Georgia showed tremendous heart in beating Mississippi State who obviously had the better players. Gerald Robinson, Ware and company, some people are watching you, I’ll be watching tonight, the Williams guy, just remember it is one game at a time. Coach and players, find a way to beat Vandy. Michael Adams, to you, personally, if you let Coach Fox get away the way we let Tubby Smith get away, I will barbecue your derriere.

Vance Duly

March 9th, 2012
1:13 am

If we play and shoot like we did tonight, we can beat Vandy Friday night. Our shooting was horrible in the 2 games vs. Vandy in the regular season…. GO DAWGS!!!

aniavSargent Carter

March 9th, 2012
1:30 am

late bulletin, king daddy, Vanderbilt aint yet hot in the SEC tourney and Georgia gonna torch Nashville like the villagers torchin’ Frankenstein’s Castle in tennsylvania, formerly known as transylvania for you inbreaded hillbillies….yeee haaaa!!!

drbasic

March 9th, 2012
1:31 am

@ in vitro sports

dude get a life…..

Sargent Carter

March 9th, 2012
1:36 am

To invitro sports, whatever the frick that means, we can read “UGA Wins”, Vandy loses, Vandy loses, but I suppose putting the past participle in the correct space gives you a kind of sensual aloof happiness, at UGA we just win with our Bulldog blood, as opposed to the commodore thud…..

Sargent Carter

March 9th, 2012
1:53 am

Go to sleep early Vandy, we got a lotta mo fo u…..we doin it Detroit Pistons style, get yo little thongs up tight, coz we gots somein special up your…alleys, or whatever….invitro sports yo girly man sassyfrasses, go dogs

jtea

March 9th, 2012
1:55 am

Enter your comments here

Chip Towers

March 9th, 2012
1:59 am

European country.

Sargent Carter

March 9th, 2012
2:15 am

The thing that makes Mark Fox an exceptional coach is that he is always analyzing, like his team could be 0 wins and 30 losses and he would be saying, ah, well, I thought we rebounded a little short and we need some more energy, but we could beat this team on a good day. I think he always believes there is at least 1% chance he will win, we will win, the players will win. He just needs some players. Mark please be Detroit bad boys on Vandy, you have the team spirit, jordan rules….

pj

March 9th, 2012
2:24 am

I was ticked because my cable provider doesn’t carry espn 3. Anyone know what channell it will be on friday night? I think we can beat Vandy if we have a plan to shut down Jenkins.
UGA basketball has never been great. It had Dominique. It hhad the 83 final 4. It had Tubby and a brief bit of hope. It had Harrick and false hope. But the U of GA has the facilities, the money and the fertile recruiting base to be something special in hoops. Mark Fox seems to be a great catch for us and I hope we keep him. Stegman used to be used for bull riding shows – I grew up in Athens and remember the stench and livestock – but the few times its been full and uga was competitive in a meaningful game – it has and can be absolutely electric.
I have a degree in music (no jokes, I already know) and some friends of mine did an acoustic test at 5 arenas in the SECOND. Stegman at its loudest can be louder than UT or UF (not UK sad to say but obvious).
I continue to hope that UGA keeps a coach for more than 5 years and allows itself to develop. I played with Carlos Strong and Terrell Bell in high school and watched them sign with the dawgs in the early 90’s and almost beat Purdue (1 seed) in the tournament to go to the sweet 16. Bulldawgs in my blood for a long time – all sports included.

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William

March 9th, 2012
4:04 am

Great start to the SEC tournament. Mark Fox has done a great job considering losing two to the NBA that could still be in school. Get some rest tonight and beat Vandy Friday night. If we play like we are capable of playing we can win. Don’t let them shoot those three’s though.

Beast from the East

March 9th, 2012
6:17 am

Nice win, Dawgs. Best of luck against Vandy.

Thomas Brown

March 9th, 2012
7:00 am

Surrounded by 22 feet of higher water South with the Gulf of Mexico, 22 feet of higher water West with the Mississippi River and 22 feet of higher water North with Lake Pontchartrain,

Atlanta Blue

March 9th, 2012
8:04 am

PJ:
espn3 is NOT a cable channel, it is a website. In Atlanta, the SEC Tournament is being carried on Peachtree TV (WPCH).

Thomas Brown

March 9th, 2012
8:12 am

Mississippi State played no defense all night long. We only had 5 players score, although again as he does Marcus Thornton had zero points and fouled out. Dustin Ware came off the bench and had a great game. Donte’ Williams has turned out to be the player everyone thought he might become for us. Nemanja Djurisic, gets underneath, and would appear that he might develop – so far, he is just shy of what he needs to be to pick up scoring for us. They just seem to miss the bucket. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope has an over-all type game with lots of steals and rebounds, and he could work on more assists and making a higher percentage of all of his shots, especially from behind the arc.

Gerald Robinson is a far better shooter than Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, and dishes off 3 times as many crisp assists.

As the announcers said all game, Mark Fox needs players. When one of the players you put out there all game long is Marcus Thornton, who just doesn’t have a game – sorry – you have an issue with the team.

We are 4 top-caliber players short a full roster this year and lose Gerald Robinson and Dustin Ware.

What does that leave you with for 2012 ? Two players is the answer to that, and maybe one other with potential. You can play with those 3, but you need 4 more. Mark Fox better figure out how to get some players to come play at the Stegesaurus, where we haven’t hosted a posted basketball game in 41 years in a gym not considered by anyone one of the top 75 gyms even.

CrαZy

March 9th, 2012
8:22 am

What is it with UGA athletes getting DUI’s and having suspended licenses??

Thomas Brown

March 9th, 2012
8:25 am

Way to go Orson Charles.

Thomas Brown

March 9th, 2012
8:28 am

That’s 5 football players this off-season, already, well on our way yet again to a stellar off-season. 430 am this morning, Friday. His NFL Draft status has done nothing but go down, and as bad as this news is for our football program, the NFL doesn’t put up with it – at all.

Thomas Brown

March 9th, 2012
8:33 am

Orson Reuben Charles, a junior tight end on the Georgia football team who declared his intentions to enter the NFL Draft next month, was arrested Friday morning on charges of DUI Alcohol and driving minimum speed.

doolydawg

March 9th, 2012
8:38 am

Saw the previous post about the games being aired on Peachtree TV… Anyone know of a channel on DirectV that carries the game?

Dawg Haus

March 9th, 2012
8:38 am

Good stuff. Way to go, Dawgs!

BobDawg

March 9th, 2012
8:42 am

Great Win, Dawgs! Throw a zone at MS and they go stupid every time…. DJurisic is really becoming a force underneath for us and reminds me of the Butler Power Forward a few years ago. Great angles, nose for the ball and always in position for the rebound and put back. Just a hard worker and was the MVP of the game in my opinion. Great Double Double for him

To pj

March 9th, 2012
8:42 am

I am pretty sure the Dogs did take down Purdue that year. Had Syracuse beat, but they hit a last second shot to save themselves, would have been in the Elite Eight.

Big Enos Burdette

March 9th, 2012
8:43 am

Charles is not a member of the team anymore. If he gets a DUI when he’s 30 is that gonna be Richt’s fault too? When does it end? Give it a break.

BobDawg

March 9th, 2012
8:46 am

TB, Mark has a lot of kids coming into the program next year. Let’s enjoy this win and get Vandy tonight. Hopefully they are off their game a little and we knock them off also. Again, I really like this Djurisic kid who will be a force down low for us and a “smart” BBall player just getting better.

honest_abe

March 9th, 2012
8:46 am

sweet win! extend the season for another day!

dawgfan

March 9th, 2012
8:48 am

Orson what in the hell my man? You roll the dice and leave early and go out and get a DUI in ATHENS of all places. You can get a cab anywhere you want with the change in your pocket, of which I’m sure your agent has given you plenty. This after your draft workouts have not gone that well. What an unbelievably stupid move.

I’m starting to think the haters have a point. You have to wonder about the kind of guys that Richt is recruiting. I’m not saying Orson is a bad guy but this kind of thing is incredibly stupid and not at all uncommon. I wince every time I pull up ajc.com.

Thanks.

BobDawg

March 9th, 2012
8:52 am

I agree with BIG ENOS, kid went pro and is learning the hard way, life just doesn’t give you what you want. He probably cost himself several million last night and may drop down in the rounds now….He is not the dawgs problem now…

Thomas Brown

March 9th, 2012
8:53 am

(1) Nick Marshall
(2) Chris Sanders
(3) Sanford Seay
(4) Orson Charles
(5) Sanders Commings

Next ?

Thomas Brown

March 9th, 2012
8:57 am

Nemanja Djurisic averages 7 points and 4 rebounds a game, and will be our 3rd best player next season, unless Mark Fox figures out how to recruit some big men.

Thomas Brown

March 9th, 2012
8:59 am

Orson Charles is on the football team until he gets drafted, if he gets drafted. And, he has reflected very poorly on The University of Georgia about 3 hours after the basketball win last night to dominate the Press today for The University of Georgia.

MORE BAD PRESS

Rusty

March 9th, 2012
9:06 am

Thomas Brown,

Orson Charles is not on the football team until he gets drafted. That is incorrect.

It is bad press though, agreed.

dawgfan

March 9th, 2012
9:06 am

“He is not the dawgs problem now…”

He was wearing a Georgia uniform about 2 months ago. He most certainly is our problem. We have not been anywhere near a championship caliber team in over half a decade. We have not won a big game against a truly big opponent in over half a decade. In the interim, we have only been known for stupid penalties, arrests, and only above average football. I’m starting to believe there is a direct correlation between the lazy and undisciplined play we’ve been seeing on the field and the stupid stuff like this that we’ve been seeing off the field.

I’m getting tired of it and you should too. We should demand more.

Thanks.

bucket

March 9th, 2012
9:09 am

Good win for the Dawgs last night. They will have to play much defense tonight than they have previously to have a chance against Vandy, however, and will need to shoot the ball tonight like they did last night. The jury is still out on how good they can be next year considering they are losing Robinson and Ware. Hopefully Gaines and Mann can step in and be ready to play with Pope, Williams, and Djurisic.

bucket

March 9th, 2012
9:10 am

Make that “much better defense”. Ugh!

Thomas Brown = Hater

March 9th, 2012
9:16 am

@Thomas Brown – Orson is not even enrolled in classes at Georgia, but somehow he is on the football team. YOU’RE AN IDIOT! He does not have a locker, does not workout with the team, not listed on the roster.

Just the facts, maam

March 9th, 2012
9:25 am

dawgfan, if they have a point, are they still haters?

Mobile Dawg

March 9th, 2012
9:26 am

Unless Mark Richt can win a championship I think he’s toast. Even the Richt supporters have to start seeing through the smoke and mirrors eventually. He’s one or two offensive linemen away from having a legitimate NC contender, he’s also one or two coaches shy, himself included.

Mobile Dawg

March 9th, 2012
9:27 am

Great win for the BB Dawgs last night. To bad about OC. Some people just don’t get it.

aladawg

March 9th, 2012
9:41 am

Mobile Dawg, Mark Richt is not going anywhere. Give it a rest and stop trying to screw our recruiting. Are you a yech fan?
Aladawg

blazerdawg

March 9th, 2012
9:42 am

OC was’nt the only one – Classic City was on fire last night!

Basketball Please

March 9th, 2012
9:43 am

If you want to talk about FORMER or current football players, bad press, etc., go to a Tech blog, they will love you there.

HERE, we are talking about a nice win for a team that has struggled but never given up this season, Dustin Ware getting 13 of his needed 16 toward 1000 career points and another chance to get the other 3; by the way, does he have his 400 assists? We are talking about giving credit to a basketball team that played to their potential last night and it paid off. And, heaven forbid, we are actually allowing ourselves to be positive about UGA basketball and look forward to a good game tonight. So, go away haters and hit negative town – it is located on North Avenue.

Go Dawgs!

super bee

March 9th, 2012
9:48 am

Meanwhile,
Orson Charles had a 4:30 am breakfast in the Athens/Clarke County Jail House.

Lakedawg

March 9th, 2012
9:49 am

@Mobile Dawg—-Just to catch you up on news Coach Mark Richt is signing a 3 year extension next week. Guess news gets to Mobile a little late, believe that is part of Alabammer.

How can anyone be toast and are only two offensive linman away from a NC contender?

Guess with the 6 we bring in this year that should get us close then.