March 21, 2013
Georgia Opens NCAA Tourney Against Montana
The suspense ended early on Monday evening. About five minutes into the selection show for the NCAA Women's Basketball Championship, the Georgia Lady Bulldogs saw their name appear on the bracket.
Georgia appeared as the No. 4 seed in the Spokane Regional, with first- and second-round games also slated to be played in Spokane. The Lady Bulldogs will face No. 13 seed Montana in the second game of Saturday's session, with tip slated for approximately 6:30 p.m. EDT. Host and No. 12 seed Gonzaga will take on No. 5 seed Iowa State in the first contest at 4:15 EDT. Saturday's winner will meet on Monday night at 9:30 EDT.
The 2013 NCAAs represents Georgia's 30th bid to "March Madness" since women's athletics came under the auspices of the NCAA beginning with the 1981-82 season.
The Lady Bulldogs' tally of 30 NCAA bids ranks second nationally. And UGA has made the most of those opportunities. Georgia also is among the nation's top-5 programs in NCAA Tournament games played (81), NCAA wins (52), "Sweet 16s" (19) and Final Fours (5).
The "All-SEC Jasmines" - the only players to start every game this season - lead Georgia. Jasmine Hassell, a first-team All-SEC pick of league coaches and a second-team selection of the AP, paces Georgia in scoring (12.9 ppg) and rebounding (6.5 rpg). Jasmine James, who was tabbed second-team and honorable mention All-SEC by coaches and the AP, respectively, chips in 10.9 ppg and a team-best 3.7 apg.
Shacobia Barbee, who was named to both the All-SEC Freshman and Defensive teams, leads Georgia in steals and is second in both rebounds and assists.
Montana also sports a rich NCAA Tournament résumé. The Lady Griz are making their 20th appearance in the "Big Dance"...and the fifth in the last six seasons.
Seniors Katie Baker and Kenzie De Boer headline Montana's roster. Baker, the 2013 Big Sky Conference MVP and a three-time first-team All-BSC performer, averages 13.5 ppg and 7.4 rpg. Baker, who also was a first-team All-BSC pick, lead the Lady Griz offensively at 13.8 ppg.
|GEORGIA LADY BULLDOGS|
|G||10||Jasmine James||5-9||Sr.||Memphis, Tenn.||10.9||3.3|
|G||11||Tiaria Griffin||5-7||Fr.||Monticello, Miss.||7.2||2.9|
|G||20||Shacobia Barbee||5-10||Fr.||Murfreesboro, Tenn.||6.4||5.7|
|F||3||Anne Marie Armstrong||6-3||Sr.||Norcross, Ga.||6.9||4.9|
|F||12||Jasmine Hassell||6-2||Sr.||Lebanon, Tenn.||12.9||6.5|
#Assists Per Game
Head Coach: Andy Landers
Record at Georgia / Years: 820-274 / 34th season
Overall Record/Years: 902-295 / 38th season
|MONTANA LADY GRIZ|
|G||2||Torry Hill||5-7||Jr.||Anaconda, Mont.||6.1||2.2|
|G||10||Kenzie De Boer||5-11||Sr.||Lynden, Wash.||13.8||3.5|
|F||00||Alyssa Smith||6-0||Sr.||Monroe, Wash.||4.2||4.5|
|F||31||Jordan Sullivan||6-2||Jr.||Sidney, Mont.||6.6||5.2|
|F||22||Katie Baker||6-0||Sr.||Coer d'Alene, Idaho||13.5||7.4|
#Assists Per Game
Head Coach: Robin Selvig
Record at Montana / Years: 798-254 / 35th season
Overall Record/Years: 798-254 / 35th season
- UGA has earned its 30th all-time bid to the NCAAs, and its 19th consecutive
- UGA has secured its secured its 28th 20-victory campaign and its 19th 25-win season under Andy Landers
- Andy Landers became the fourth major college wbb coach to reach 900 career wins at Ole Miss on Feb. 24
- UGA's "senior Jasmines" both were named All-SEC. Hassell was a first-team selection, while James was a second-team pick
- In specialty stats, UGA is: +330 in points off TOs, +269 in paint points and +241 in bench points
Quoting Coach Landers
On entering NCAA Tournament play...
"Some things in life never get old and watching 'Georgia' flash up there on the screen is one of those things. It's always exciting and it's also I think very gratifying and rewarding to our basketball teams that have earned the right to represent the University of Georgia in the NCAA Tournament.
On Georgia's success in the NCAA Tournament historically...
"Generally speaking, through the years we've had competitive basketball teams. But we've also had teams that had the ability to focus and understand that moving through a tournament bracket doesn't involve moving through the tournament. It isn't as if we're engaged in something with 63 other teams. Quite honestly, we never know when the other teams are playing or even who's playing each other. That's been a real key for us, keeping the blinders on, looking at what our piece of business and taking care of that business."
Keeping an eye on...entering the SEC Tournament:
Jasmine James is...
- 9 points from No. 19 Camille Lowe
- 7 assists from No. 9 Saudia Roundtree
- 19 steals from No. 7 Janet Harris
- 26 points from No. 19 Camille Lowe
- 46 points from No. 20 Jasmine James
- 7 3FGs from No. 5 Rachel Powell
- 161 3FGAs from No. 2 K. Holland-Corn
- 52 points from becoming UGA's 34th 1,000-point scorer
- 4 blocks from No. 9 Tasha Humphrey
- 21 points from becoming UGA's 34th 1,000-point scorer
Make it 19 straight for UGA
Georgia has now received bids to each of the last 19 NCAA Tournaments, beginning with the Lady Bulldogs' 1994-95 Final Four season.
That represents the fourth longest active streak in the nation.
During that span, UGA has compiled a 34-18 (.654) record in NCAA play and advanced to:
- 12 "Sweet 16s" (1995-96-97-99-00-03-04-05-06-07-10-11);
- Six "Elite Eights" (1995-96-97-99-00-04);
- Three Final Fours (1995-96-99);
- The 1996 NCAA title game.
Georgia vs. Spokane's teams
Georgia is 1-0 all-time against Montana, 2-0 versus Iowa State and 0-1 in matchups with Gonzaga.
The Lady Bulldogs defeated Montana, 74-46, on March 18, 2000, in Athens in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament.
Georgia raced to a 40-16 halftime lead and cruised thereafter. Coco Miller led three Lady Bulldogs in double figures with 16 points, while Cheryl Keller led the Lady Griz with 16 points.
The Lady Bulldogs then bested Stanford to advance to the West Regional in Portland, Ore. Georgia dispatched North Carolina in the "Sweet 16" before falling to Rutgers in the Regional final.
Both of the Lady Bulldogs' dates with Iowa State came during "March Madness." Georgia topped the Cyclones 89-71 in the 1999 Mideast Regional Final in Cincinnati and 76-56 in the 2007 second round in Minneapolis.
UGA's lone date with Gonzaga was a 71-68 setback last season on Dec. 19 in the Las Vegas Holiday Hoops Classic. Haiden Palmer hit a three-pointer with two-tenths of a second remaining to give Gonzaga its only lead of the game. That completed a 22-4 run over the final 6:45 as the Zags erased a 15-point deficit to rally past No. 13 Georgia.
Go West...young woman
Georgia has a long history of trekking west for the NCAA Tournament. While the use of geographic names for Regionals was discontinued in 2005, this is what any second grader would consider the Lady Bulldogs' ninth assignment to a "West" Regional.
Officially Georgia was assigned to the West Regional of the bracket in 1985 (Los Angeles, Calif.), 1990 (Stanford, Calif.), 1991 (Las Vegas, Nev.), 1993 (Missoula, Mont.), 1997 (Missoula, Mont.), 2000 (Portland, Ore.) and 2004 (Seattle, Wash.).
Since then, the Lady Dogs' unofficial assignments to the West came in 2010 (Sacramento, Calif.) and 2013 (Spokane, Wash.).
Georgia won the 1985 West Regional en route to an NCAA runner-up finish that season and reached the "Elite Eight" rounds of the West in 1991, 1997, 2000 and 2004.
Staggering sidelines numbers
Georgia's Andy Landers and Montana's Robin Selvig have combined to provide an amazing 69 seasons of tenure for their respective employers.
Landers was hired as Georgia's first - and still only - full-time women's basketball head coach in 1979 and has recorded 820 victories in his 34 seasons in Athens.
Selvig took over in Missoula in 1978 and has secured 798 wins in 35 campaigns with the Lady Griz.
Inside those campaigns are some simply staggering numbers, such as combined...
- 1618 wins;
- 54 20-win campaigns (27 for both);
- 36 25 win teams (19 for Landers, 17 for Selvig);
- 50 NCAA Tournament bids (30 for Landers, 20 for Selvig).
Playing time being distributed
A year ago, six Lady Bulldogs averaged between 20.0 and 34.5 minutes of playing time per game. All told, five different players logged all 40 minutes a combined 25 times.
This season, playing time is being much more evenly distributed.
Ten Lady Bulldogs are currently averaging between 11.3 and 30.7 mpg and on only 45 occasions in 31 games has a Georgia player been on the floor more than 30 minutes.
Most dramatically affected has been Jasmine James. James averaged 35.4 mpg during her first three seasons and played 30 minutes or more in 82 of 91 games played over that span.
This season, James leads the team in PT but has only played more than 30 minutes only 14 times. She has seen more action lately, logging 40 MP in four of the last nine games.
Depth showing up elsewhere
Georgia's depth has provided a big boost in a couple of "specialty stats" this season - one directly and another in an indirectly manner.
The Lady Bulldogs' bench has contributed 639 points, 241 more than the opposing teams' reserves.
Georgia has scored 656 points off of turnovers, a +330 margin that more than doubles the opponents' 326.
Hassell finishing career strong
Jasmine Hassell has played the best basketball of her career of late.
Over the past nine games, the senior from Lebanon, Tenn., has averaged 16.0 ppg and 9.6 rpg while connecting on 59.2 percent of her shots from the floor.
After recording four double-doubles in her first 121 games as a Lady Bulldog, Hassell notched four in a five-game span from Feb. 7-24.
Hassell became the first Lady Bulldog to have three straight double-doubles in league play in nearly five years. She did so with a 15-point, 10-rebound performance against Auburn, followed by a game-high 18 points and 12 rebounds at LSU and then 16 points and a career-high 16 rebounds at Florida.
The last time a Lady Bulldog recorded three straight double-doubles in regular-season league action was during the 2007-08 season. Tasha Humphrey did so in four consecutive outings against LSU, Florida, Mississippi State and Auburn from Feb. 10-24.
Hassell's string was broken when she scored 14 points in 15 minutes against Arkansas but had just three rebounds. She did pick up another double-double at Ole Miss, scoring 23 points (a career-best in SEC play) and grabbing 10 boards in Oxford.
Lady Bulldogs secure 25th win
The SEC Tourney win over LSU guaranteed Georgia its 19th 25-win campaign during Andy Landers' 34 seasons in Athens.
This year's senior class also won 25 games as freshmen in 2009-10, when the Lady Bulldogs finished 25-9 overall.
A milestone campaign
The 2012-13 season featured a pair of memorable victories for Andy Landers, the first - and still only - full-time head coach in the history of Lady Bulldog Basketball.
The Lady Bulldogs' Nov. 20 victory over Savannah State represented Andy Landers' 800th win at UGA. He became just the eighth coach - men's or women's - to secure 800 victories at one Division I school.
Georgia's victory at Ole Miss on Feb. 24 represented the 900th win in Andy Landers' career as a collegiate head coach.
Landers became just the fourth women's coach to reach that milestone, joining Pat Summitt, Jody Conradt and Sylvia Hatchell. C. Vivian Stringer became the fifth coach to secure 900 wins two days after Landers did so.
Our take on Landers' "career"
As Andy Landers approached his 900th career win, the question came much more frequently.
"Hey, the NCAA Records Book says that Andy Landers only had 795 career victories entering the 2012-13 season. What gives?"
The University of Georgia politely disagrees with the NCAA on what constitutes Landers' career record as a collegiate head coach.
Prior to arriving in Athens, Landers was 82-21 in four seasons at Roane State, a junior college in Harriman, Tenn. UGA chooses - and has since 1979 - to include Landers' Roane results in his record as a collegiate head coach.
The NCAA does not recognize Landers' wins at Roane because it is not a four-year institution. Therefore, it lists Landers' "career" record as only his coaching efforts at Georgia.
James joins UGA's top-20 scorers
Jasmine James has ascended from No. 31 to No. 20 among UGA's career scoring leaders during 2012-13. She enters the NCAA Tournament with 1,387 points, nine away from the current No. 19 Camille Lowe.
Hassell hits millennium as well
Jasmine Hassell scored her 1,000th career point against Savannah State, becoming the 33rd Lady Bulldog to reach that milestone.
Hassell now has 1,341 points and is chasing classmate Jasmine James for the No. 20 spot...starting tonight 46 away.
Who's next? AMA or Miller
Armstrong has 978 points, 22 shy of 1,000 for her career. Miller has 948 points, 52 from that mark.
A milestone in the making
Anne Marie Armstrong could become the third Georgia senior to reach the 1,000 career points.
James scored her 1000th point late last season at South Carolina and Hassell did so this season against Savannah State on Nov. 20.
The only three classmates to top 1,000 points at UGA to date are the Class of 1997's La'Keshia Frett (1,850 points), Tracy Henderson (1,764) and Kedra Holland-Corn (1,566).
Freshmen garnering PT
Georgia's freshmen have logged major "PT" from the get-go this season, contributing 49 minutes against Rutgers in the season opener.
All told, freshmen have played 2,080 minutes, accounting for 33.5 percent of the Lady Bulldogs' total playing time, a mark that would be higher if Merritt Hempe had not missed four games with a foot injury.