Georgia Falls to Texas A&M at Home, 76-66

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Sunday, Jan. 20, 2019
ATHENS, Ga. — Though four Lady Bulldogs finished the game with double-digit scores, the Georgia women’s basketball team fell to Texas A&M, 76-66, Sunday afternoon in Stegeman Coliseum.

Leading the Lady Dogs were sophomore Gabby Connally with 18 points, redshirt-sophomore Jenna Staiti and senior Caliya Robinson with 14 points apiece, and redshirt-junior Taja Cole with 11 points. Cole, who leads the SEC in assists, also finished the game with nine assists.

With this loss, Georgia drops to 3-3 in the SEC and 12-7 overall.
“I think we need to be more aggressive,” Georgia head coach Joni Taylor said. "We fouled them, and we didn't get to the free-throw line enough. That starts with getting the ball inside and attacking. They were playing some zone, so we don't get as many opportunities as when they are playing man, but this is the second game that we had single-digit free throw attempts. It means we aren't being aggressive enough to get the ball inside."
Georgia started the game hot on offense, scoring eight points on three-straight possessions in the first minutes of the game. Robinson knocked down a two-point jumper to give Georgia its first points of the game, and Connally sunk a 3-pointer on the next possession. Cole added to the trio of baskets to give the Lady Bulldogs an 8-5 lead.

Another three-point shot by Connally pushed Georgia’s lead to 11-5 midway through the first period, but the team’s six-point advantage over the Aggies would be its largest of the game. In the last minutes of the first period, Texas A&M’s points at the free throw line sent the Aggies into the second period with a 19-16 advantage over the Lady Dogs.

Both Georgia players Robinson and Connally managed to cut Georgia’s deficit to three points in the second period, but the Aggies maintained their advantage for the remainder of the first half.

With less than 10 seconds remaining before halftime, Hubbard found Staiti down low for the layup, cutting a Texas A&M lead to eight points to send the Aggies into the half with a 36-28 advantage. In the first half, Robinson and Connally racked up 18 of Georgia’s 28 points. Robinson went into halftime as Georgia’s leading scorer with 10 points. Connally finished the first half two points shy of a double-digit scoring performance with eight points.

Coming out after the half, Georgia’s offense caught fire. Two three-point plays by Staiti highlighted the third period for Georgia. The first play featured a layup and-one by the redshirt-sophomore. Staiti followed this up with a three-point basket in the remaining minutes of the third to make it a four-point game with the Aggies leading 49-45.

In the opening seconds of the fourth, a basket by Robinson made it a three-point game, with Texas A&M leading 52-49. Cole followed up with a layup, before Robinson tied the game 55-all after sinking two-of-two free throws

Not letting up, the Aggies eventually regained a 10-point lead. Though the Lady Bulldogs managed to make it a five-point game twice in the last five minutes of the game, Texas A&M would eventually go on a scoring run to take the 76-66 victory over Georgia.

The Lady Bulldogs will stay at home to host Alabama in their next SEC matchup Sunday, Jan. 27, at 2 p.m. in Stegeman Coliseum.