NEW YORK—Georgia Tech ended CSU Bakersfield’s postseason run in the semifinals of the National Invitation Tournament Tuesday night at as the Yellow Jackets defeated the Roadrunners 76-61.
Georgia Tech raced out to an 8-2 start and took their largest lead of the first half at the 5:18 mark when a Quinton Stephens three-pointer made it 29-18. The ‘Runners chipped away, cutting the advantage to seven when Dedrick Basile sank a long three-pointer with eight seconds remaining. The Yellow Jackets took a 36-26 lead into half as Tadrick Jackson made a three-pointer at the buzzer.
After shooting over 50-percent in the first half of each of the first three NIT games, CSU Bakersfield was 35.5% (11-of-31) from the floor. Georgia Tech used their height advantage to get to the free throw line 11 times in the opening 20 minutes, making seven attempts. CSUB would only get one free throw attempt, a Damiyne Durham make as both Durham and Airington scored seven points in the first half. Josh Okogie was 6-of-8 from the free throw line as he posted a first half-high 10 points.
The Roadrunners further reduced the Georgia Tech lead in the second half. Back-to-back Basile three-pointers made it a 42-34 game with just under 16 to play. The Yellow Jackets held CSUB without a field goal for nearly five minutes as Georgia Tech pushed out to an 18-point advantage at the 11:49 mark.
The Georgia Tech lead ranged anywhere from 15-19 points for most of the next six minutes. CSUB would 69-55 with 3:21 on the clock as Jaylin Airington put down a three-pointer. A final 5-0 Yellow Jackets’ spurt put the game away for good.
Georgia Tech would limit the ‘Runners to 35% shooting for the night (21-of-60) as the Yellow Jackets stung the ‘Runners with 15 turnovers. Those 15 turnovers would lead to 18 Georgia Tech (21-15) points. Tech would go 19-of-265 from the free throw line compared to 11-of-14 for CSUB. The Roadrunners (25-10) outrebounded the Yellow Jackets 39-38, 13-10 on the offensive glass.
Okogie scored a game high 22 points. Ben Lammers charted a double-double of 15 points and 11 rebounds. Quinton Stephens scored 13 and had nine rebounds. Tadric Jackson added 12. Basile paced the Roadrunners with 18 points. Airington charted 12. Shon Briggs and Damiyne Durham each tallied 10.