Inside the Inquirer: Postgame interview with Georgia State’s Sharon Baldwin-Tener (1/15/15)

Georgia State women's basketball head coach Sharon Baldwin-TenerPhoto credit:  Joe Imel
Georgia State women’s basketball head coach Sharon Baldwin-Tener
Photo credit: Joe Imel

By E. Marcel Pourtout, Editor

We caught up with Georgia State women’s basketball head coach Sharon Baldwin-Tener following her team’s 45-39 home defeat to UT Arlington on Jan. 15.

Harrow’s 27 Leads Panthers to 83-62 Win in Annual ‘Barefoot for Bare Feet’ Game

Georgia State guard Ryan HarrowPhoto credit: Joe Imel
Georgia State guard Ryan Harrow
Photo credit: Joe Imel

Release from Georgia State Athletics:

Led by 27 points from senior Ryan Harrow, Georgia State scored an impressive 83-62 over UT Arlington on Thursday night at the GSU Sports Arena as head coach Ron Hunter coached barefoot to raise awareness for Samaritan’s Feet in the annual ‘Barefoot for Bare Feet’ Game.

Harrow finished 10-of-17 from the floor with four 3-pointers in his return to the court after missing a game due to an injury.

The Panthers forced a season-high 26 turnovers which led to 35 points. In contrast, Georgia State turned it over only eight times, which led to just two UT Arlington points.

Georgia State (11-6, 4-2 Sun Belt) won for the second-straight game and have now won 33 of their last 42 games dating back to last season.

Redshirt-junior Kevin Ware added 11 points, scoring in double figures for the fourth time in the last five games, while junior Markus Crider added 10 points and six rebounds.

UT Arlington (9-7, 3-3 Sun Belt) was held to 40.4 percent shooting, including just 7-of-22 from 3-point range.

“It was not necessarily a pretty game, but I thought defensively we were pretty good,” Hunter said. “When you can force a team into 26 turnovers, it is going to help you overcome getting outrebounded. However, you are never going to be upset when you can get a 21 point win. It is a nice start to a tough stretch of three games in five days.”

Hunter improved to 4-0 at Georgia State when coaching without shoes or socks to help Samaritan’s Feet, an organization that’s goal is to help the 300 million children around the world that wake up each day without shoes. In Hunter’s three-and-half years at Georgia State, the Panthers have taken trips to South Africa and Costa Rica to distribute shoes and hope to children in need.

Trailing 6-2 early, Georgia State held the Mavericks scoreless for five minutes and went on a 13-0 run to take an 15-6 lead with 13:19 to play and never trail again the rest of the game.

UT Arlington used a late 7-0 run to cut Georgia State’s lead to 31-30 with under a minute to play before a 3-pointer and fast break lay-up by Harrow put the Panthers back up 36-30 with under 30 seconds remaining.

Georgia State led by as many as nine in the first half, shooting 45 percent from the floor, while holding UT Arlington to just 39 percent shooting. The Panthers scored 15 points off 10 Maverick turnovers in the first 20 minutes.

The Panthers built their first double-digit lead, 51-40, with just under 14 minutes to go in the second half, making five-straight field goals. Georgia State continued to push and led by as many as 21 with 7:08 to play.

Greg Gainey came off the bench to lead the Mavericks with 11 points and four rebounds. Lonnie McClanahan just missed a double-double with nine points and 10 rebounds, while Kevin Hervey added nine points and seven boards.

Junior R.J. Hunter’s continued his pursuit of Georgia State’s all-time scoring record, finishing with eight points. He is now just three shy of tying Terrence Brandon for second and 39 points shy of the school-record of 1,515 held by Rodney Hamilton.

Senior Ryann Green added seven points and three of the Panthers 13 steals, while Curtis Washington and Jordan Session each came off the bench to chip in six points a piece. Washington added three blocked shots and is now just one shy of 100 for his career, which would make him just the seventh Panther to accomplish the feat.

Ole Miss Upsets No. 18 Lady Bulldogs

Georgia guard Erika FordPhoto credit: Sean Taylor
Georgia guard Erika Ford
Photo credit: Sean Taylor

Release from Georgia Athletics:

Ole Miss outscored No. 18 Georgia 8-0 over the final 2:13 to secure a 55-52 victory over the Lady Bulldogs here Thursday night.

The Lady Bulldogs went up 52-47 on a pair of Tiaria Griffin free throws with 2:22 remaining but failed to score the rest of the way.

Erika Ford paced Georgia (15-3, 3-2 SEC) with a season-high 20 points.

Four starters reached double figures for Ole Miss (14-4, 4-1 SEC), with Tia Faleru and Erika Sisk scoring 12 apiece and Gracie Frizzell and Danielle McCray both chipping in 11.

“Ole Miss played hard,” head coach Andy Landers said. “They were well prepared, and they did a nice job defensively disrupting what we wanted to do.

“Defensively, we played well,” Landers continued. “We did have a couple of breakdowns, back-door breakdowns to layups. Offensively, there were too many turnovers that led to easy points for Mississippi. End of the day, turnovers…missed free throws – and we’ve been shooting those well – did us end.”

Georgia was only 8-of-16 from the line, that after going 24-of-31 there at Auburn on Sunday.

Ole Miss led the entire first half before Krista Donald knotted the score at 28-28 with 17.5 seconds on the clock. Georgia eventually grabbed its first lead on a layup by Ford with 13:38 remaining that made it 38-36. A Griffin layup extended that to 40-36 on the Lady Bulldogs’ next possession.

Georgia eventually led by as many as six points at 49-43 with 7:31 remaining before the Rebels rallied.

Ole Miss tied the score at 52-52 on a pair of free throws from McCray with 1:26 left. After Griffin missed a jumper, Sisk converted on two more trips to the line with 28 ticks on the clock.

Georgia turned the ball over and was forced to foul with 14 seconds remaining. Sisk made one of two free throws to put Ole Miss on top 55-52. The Rebels fouled Merritt Hempe away from the ball with 6.9 seconds left. She missed the front end of the one-and-one and the Lady Bulldogs fouled again.

Bretta Hart missed two free throws, giving Georgia the ball back with 3.9 seconds remaining, but Griffin’s heave from just over halfcourt failed.

For most of the first half, the Ole Miss upset seemed likely. Georgia got off to a slow start offensively and fell behind 7-2 3:17 into the game. The Rebels gradually expanded that margin, which topped out at 21-11 with 7:35 left in the half on a steal and layup by Faleru.

Ford took things into her own hands at that point. She knocked down a jumper with 7:14 on the clock and scored 12 points during a 17-7 run to end the half.