Tech top by No.24 LSU in Holiday Hoopsgiving, 53-69

Sports
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ATLANTA – Georgia Tech men’s basketball shot 42 percent from the field, but 24 turnovers and 56=percent freethrow shooting were too much to overcome in a 69-53 loss to No. 25 LSU on Saturday evening in the 2021 Holiday Hoopsgiving tournament at State Farm Arena.

Georgia Tech (5-4) raced out to a 24-12 lead in the first half against the undefeated Tigers, but LSU (8-0) closed the half on a 21-10 run to cut the Yellow Jackets’ advantage to 34-30 at the break.

After LSU scored the first six points of the second half to take its first lead of the game at 36-34, Tech briefly regained a 40-38 advantage. However, the Tigers responded with a 12-2 run to a 50-42 lead and the Jackets never got closer than six the rest of the way. A 14-0 late-game run for LSU sealed the defeat.

Tech’s 24 turnovers were a season high (prev.: 16 – Nov. 12 vs. Stetson) and the Yellow Jackets’ .556 free-throw percentage (10-of-18) was their second-lowest of the season (min. 15 attempts). The Jackets also allowed LSU to grab 16 offensive rebounds, effectively giving the Tigers 40 extra possessions between turnovers and offensive boards. LSU outscored the Jackets 33-15 on points off turnovers and 19-10 on second-chance points.

The turnovers, free-throw shooting and offensive rebounds spoiled an impressive defensive effort for the Yellow Jackets, who forced 21 turnovers and limited the Tigers to just 39 percent shooting, including just 16 percent (3-of-19) from three-point range.

Jordan Usher and Michael Devoe led Georgia Tech with 15 and 12 points, respectively. LSU’s Tari Eason led all scorers with 23 points on 9-of-13 shooting from the field and 5-of-7 from the free-throw line.

After a six-day break from games due to final exams, the schedule doesn’t get any easier for the Yellow Jackets, who will return to action on Saturday, Dec. 18 versus 15th-ranked USC at the Jerry Colangelo Classic in Phoenix, Ariz. Tipoff is set for 4 p.m. ET and the game will be televised on the Pac-12 Network.

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