Lady Bulldog Game Notes: UGA vs. LSU
Feb. 25, 2012
Date: Sunday, February 26
Tipoff: 5:00 p.m.
Location: Athens, Ga.
Arena: Stegeman Coliseum (10,523)
* ESPN2; Brenda VanLengen - play-by-play; Brooke Weisbrod - color analyst
* Georgia Bulldog Radio Network (AM 960 The Ref in Athens and 103.7 FM from Gainesville) Jeff Dantzler - play-by-play
* UGA leads 20-17; however, LSU won the last meeting, 47-41, on 1/30/11 in Baton Rouge
* UGA leads 11-5 in Athens; including a 49-46 win on 2/4/10
First 500 UGA students receive Hairy Dawg hats and can register to win Spring Break-themed prizes
First 1,000 fans receive Lady Bulldog replica jersey t-shirts
28 down, 1 big one to go!
No. 18 Georgia wraps up its regular-season slate on Sunday by hosting LSU at Stegeman Coliseum in a contest that will determine whether the Lady Bulldogs are the No. 3, No. 4 of No. 5 seed for next weekend's SEC Tournament. ESPN2 will televise the contest, with Brenda VanLengen calling play-by-play and Brooke Weisbrod as color analyst.
The Lady Bulldogs are 21-7 overall and 10-5 in SEC action following Thursday's 87-52 win over Ole Miss.
Georgia sports a balanced offensive attack, with four Lady Bulldogs averaging in double digits both overall and in SEC play.
Overall, Jasmine Hassell paces Georgia by averaging 13.1 points per game, while Khaalidah Miller contributes 12.2, Anne Marie Armstrong adds 12.1 and Jasmine James chips in 10.8.
In SEC action, Armstrong leads the way at 13.5 ppg, followed by Hassell at 12.2, Miller at 10.9 and Meredith Mitchell at 10.1. Jasmine James is a single point shy of a fifth double-digit average at 9.9 ppg.
LSU arrives in Athens with records of 20-8 overall and 10-5 in the SEC.
LaSondra Barrett leads the Lady Tigers with averages of 12.8 points and 7.3 boards per game, while six other players average better than 5.0 ppg.
Quoting Coach Landers...
On facing LSU...
"LSU presents a different challenge from a defensive standpoint. They match up in the half court in the zone unlike anyone I have seen in the conference. They will press you some...you know their personnel is athletic. They have excellent size...they can put three big kids on the court at the same time. They will bring some unique challenges to the Coliseum on Sunday. "
On returning home following two tough road games...
"We got a little bit of a smile in the schedule as we finish up with Ole Miss coming in on Thursday and LSU on Sunday. What it does is it helps you with your prep on Thursday and Sunday and gives you a little more rest time and a little bit more comfort being at home."
Series history with LSU
The Lady Bulldogs are 20-17 overall against LSU, including an 11-5 mark versus the Lady Tigers at Stegeman Coliseum.
In the most recent meeting last Jan. 30 in Baton Rouge, Georgia failed on 12 attempts to tie or take the lead in the second half before eventually falling to the Lady Tigers 47-41 at the Maravich Assembly Center.
Jasmine Hassell scored a game-high 16 points on 8-of-11 shooting for UGA.
LSU led 27-21 at halftime and scored on its opening possession of the second half before a 7-0 surge pulled the Lady Bulldogs within one point at 29-28 with 17:19 left.
Georgia then failed to convert on 10 opportunities to tie or take the lead over the next 5:08.
"We got some good looks, and we had the right people getting those looks," Landers said. "I thought we executed very well during most of that stretch. Some of the shots really looked good as they were going, but we couldn't get any of them to fall."
Georgia last hosted the Lady Tigers at Stegeman Coliseum on Feb. 4, 2010. Jasmine James scored a team-high 15 points - including the game's final three - and Angel Robinson grabbed a game-high 14 rebounds - including an LSU miss as time expired - to lead Georgia in a 49-46 OT victory over the No. 19-ranked Lady Tigers.
That represented just the second time in Landers' 987 (of now 1060) games coached at Georgia that the Lady Bulldogs scored less than 50 and won.
Last Time Out...
Meredith Mitchell's 20 points led a quartet of double-digit scoring Lady Bulldogs as No. 18 Georgia steamed past Ole Miss, 87-52, Thursday night.
The Lady Bulldogs led just 36-34 at halftime but outscored the Rebels 51-18 - including a decisive 30-3 surge - following the intermission.
"The second half was as good as the first half was disappointing," said Andy Landers. "I have to give our kids credit for turning something that didn't look very good into something that was pretty impressive."
Georgia shot a blistering 52.6 percent from the floor, its highest shooting percentage of the season.
With 18:53 remaining in the game and the score tied at 39-39, the Lady Bulldogs took control and never looked back. Sparked by a Mitchell trey, Georgia executed a 30-3 surge that put them up by 27, 69-42.
Seniors celebrated before game
The regular-season finale will serve as "Senior Day," with players Meredith Mitchell and Brittney Crews and student athletic trainer Candice Gaither honored during pre-game ceremonies.
Mitchell, the one four-year letterwinner on this year's squad, has developed consistently throughout her career. A three-year starter, Mitchell earned a spot of the SEC's All-Defensive team a year ago. She already secured her bachelor's degree in Management from UGA's Terry College of Business in December and plans to complete a master's degree.
Crews left a scholarship at Brenau University in Gainesville to join the Lady Bulldogs as a walk on in the fall of 2010. She practiced with the team but could not play last season per NCAA regulations regarding transfers. She has been a positive presence on the squad throughout her time in Athens. Crews will soon earn a degree in Biology.
SEC seeding? UGA No. 3, 4 or 5
The Lady Bulldogs enter the day in a three-way tie with LSU and Arkansas for third place in the SEC. UGA is capable of obtaining the No. 3, No. 4 or No. 5 seed for next weekend's SEC Tournament in Nashville.
If UGA defeats LSU, the Lady Bulldogs will be the No. 3 seed and will play next Friday at 10:00 p.m. ET against the winner of Thursday's game between the No. 6 and No. 11 seeds.
If UGA loses to LSU and South Carolina defeats Arkansas, Georgia will be the No. 4 seed and will play at 7:30 p.m. ET on Friday against the winner of Thursday's matchup between the No. 5 and No. 12 seeds.
If UGA loses to LSU and Arkansas beats South Carolina, the Lady Bulldogs will be the No. 5 seed and play the No. 12 seed at 7:30 p.m. ET on Thursday.
A bet's a bet!
PGA golfer and UGA grad Bubba Watson, who is married for former Lady Bulldog Angie (Ball) Watson, will serve as a guest coach for the LSU game.
Watson won his bench seat in a bet with Andy Landers last fall when Watson boasted he could easily hit a golf ball from the goal line at Sanford Stadium over the third deck at the opposite end of the venue.
Success meant Watson could be an assistant coach for a Lady Bulldogs' game of his choice this season.
Failure meant Landers would caddy for Watson at a practice round prior to this year's Master's in Augusta.
Watson proved true on his word...and then some. He blistered several balls - including one over an outstretched Landers laying on the ground in front of him - easily out of the Sanford Stadium.
A little more on Angie
Angie Ball Watson was a three-year starter for the Lady Bulldogs and played on teams that advanced to the 1999 Final Four and won the 1997 and 2000 SEC Championships.
A native of Scarborough, Ontario, outside of Toronto, Ball missed the second half of her freshman year due to a shoulder injury. She blossomed during the rest of her career and averaged 4.7 points as a sophomore and 7.2 as both a junior and senior. The Lady Bulldogs won a school-record 32 games during Ball's senior season.
Ball earned a spot on the roster of the WNBA's Charlotte Sting before a knee injury ended her professional career.
Former teammates face off
Today's contest marks the sixth time a Lady Bulldog has faced a former prep teammate during the 2011-12 campaign.
Georgia's Meredith Mitchell and LSU's Courtney Young were classmates at Midfield (Ala.) High where they were the driving force behind a dominant four-year run by the Lady Patriots.
Midfield captured back-to-back Alabama state titles teams in 2007 and 2008, as well as a runner-up finish in 2005. As seniors in 2007-08, Mitchell and Jones led the Lady Patriots to a 32-1 finish and a final ranking of No. 12 nationally by USA Today.
The other reunions occurred when the Lady Bulldogs played at Georgia Southern, at Mercer, at Auburn and versus Mississippi State twice.
A half-dozen former teammates played against each other in Statesboro - Westlake High School's Tamika Willis and Danielle Spencer; Chattahoochee High School's Erika Ford and Kayla Upchurch; and Jefferson High School's Brittney Crews and MiMi DuBose.
Willis also faced Westlake alum Sharnea Boykin in Macon.
Sophomore Khaalidah Miller and Auburn senior Morgan Jennings played together for two seasons at Frederick Douglass High in Atlanta.
Mitchell and MSU's Brittany Young also played also together for two seasons at Midfield High.
Equal opportunity thieves
Georgia sports four players with 50-plus steals, a first for the Lady Bulldogs since 1982-83.
Meredith Mitchell's career-high six steals against Ole Miss made her the fourth player to top the 50-steal mark.
Anne Marie Armstrong owns a team-best 62 steals on the year. Jasmine James has 57 steals and the team's best per-game average of 2.7 spg. Khaalidah Miller has 54 steals.
The last quartet to have 50-plus steals for UGA was Teresa Edwards (70), Janet Harris (61), Cynthia Collins (53) and Wanda Holloway (52) in 1982-83 - the first of Georgia's five Final Four teams.
This marks the third time a quartet of Lady Bulldogs secured 50 or more thefts. The 1980-81 team also four players with more than 50 takeaways.
Armstrong leads SEC stats leaders
In statistics for SEC games only, Anne Marie Armstrong leads the league with nine top-10 listings among the 13 categories kept.
Armstrong is No. 6 in ppg; No. 6 in rpg; No. 6 in def. rpg; No. 6 in MP; No. 7 in bpg; No. 8 in FG pct.; No. 8 in apg; No. 8 in spg; and No. 9 in assts-to-TOs.
SEC Only Top-10 Stat leaders
Miller enters the regular-season final vs. LSU one threes shy of No. 7 tally of Kedra Holland during Georgia's 1996 NCAA runner-up campaign.
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