Athens, GA — Two undefeated teams went head-to-head earlier today, as No. 2 Texas took on the Georgia Lady Bulldogs in Athens.
Unfortunately for Georgia, Texas' stellar — and nationally recognized — offense was too much for the Lady Bulldogs to handle, as Georgia fell to 7-1 after losing 81-53 to Texas (7-0).
The Longhorns’ offense carried them to the dominating victory with Ariel Atkins leading the way. Atkins was the top scorer for Texas with 17 points. Interestingly enough, Georgia's star player of the evening, Mackenzie Engram, also scored 17 points. For Engram, this team-high was only one point short of her season-high. She also contributed defensively to the team, with two blocks and two steals.
However, Engram’s defensive performance was not enough to combat Texas — a team that averages 95.0 points per game. In fact, the 81 points from Texas against Georgia marked its second lowest scoring output this season.
Why? The answer: Georgia’s defense.
“Georgia has played better defensively early in the year than we have,” said Texas head coach Karen Aston. "We’ve had some moments where we haven’t been great, so I was interested to see how our offense would stack up to a really great defense."
Texas Longhorns Women's Basketball's Karen Aston talks about Texas' win todayPosted by Swish Appeal on Sunday, December 3, 2017
Even though Georgia couldn’t match up against the Longhorns offensively, they did play to their strengths and stepped up that strong defense. However, they fell short to Texas in defensive rebounds and steals, but the Lady Bulldogs blocked six shots as opposed to Texas’ five.
A one-block difference may not seem like much, but for Georgia’s Caliya Robinson, it was quite the achievement, because four of those six blocks belonged to her.
The drive and persistence demonstrated by Robinson was representative of Georgia's determination to fight to the finish. Although they were not able to hold on to their undefeated record, they were able to hold the Longhorns below their average in rebounds, assists per game, and steals per game.
Even though the Lady Bulldogs could not continue Georgia Athletics’ weekend winning streak after an SEC College Football Championship, Mackenzie Engram is taking the loss as a learning experience.
“It’s something we can learn from,” Engram said. “I would rather lose now and learn now and continue to have a better season and take this loss as a lesson.”
After a short break, the Longhorns will take on Tennessee on Sunday, Dec. 10 while Georgia will face North Carolina A&T on Wednesday, Dec. 14.
#Texas is REALLY GOOD! Did you see what they did today?Posted by Swish Appeal on Sunday, December 3, 2017