Udofia, Favors lead Georgia Tech’s 78-43 win
Coach Paul Hewitt ideally wants Georgia Tech’s offense to flow
through big men Gani Lawal and Derrick Favors.
Now Hewitt just needs to create more scoring chances for
“I’m concerned we’re not getting him more shots,” the coach
said. “He’s really improved his free-throw shooting. His offensive
game is getting better.”
Mfon Udofia scored 17 points, and Derrick Favors had 13 points
and 11 rebounds as the two freshmen helped Georgia Tech earn its
second straight win, 78-43 over Winston-Salem State on Tuesday.
The Yellow Jackets (10-2) have won eight of 10, but Lawal, whose
13.7 scoring average leads the team, took only three shots from the
field and finished with two points.
“He’s a better free-throw shooter, and his jumper from 15 feet
is improving,” Hewitt said. “We have to do a better job of
getting him the ball.”
With a starting lineup that included guards Udofia, D’Andre
Bell, Maurice Miller, Georgia Tech had the pressure it needed to
force 31 turnovers, a season high for the Rams (2-8).
“We play in streaks, bad streaks then good streaks,” said
Udofia, who had three assists and four turnovers. “We have to work
on keeping our intensity all the way.”
Miscues by Winston-Salem State led to 34 points for the Yellow
Jackets. The Rams failed to score a second-half point until the
12:56 mark, when two free throws by Brian Fisher cut the lead to
“It was one of the toughest games I’ve ever had to coach mainly
because of lack of discipline,” Winston-Salem State coach Bobby
Collins said. “With 31 turnovers, you aren’t going to beat very
many teams or even give yourself a chance to be in games.”
Zachery Peacock had 13 points and seven rebounds for Georgia
Tech, which dropped out of the Top 25 poll after a home loss to
Florida State on Dec. 20.
Hewitt hopes starting guard Iman Shumpert could return Saturday
when Georgia Tech visits North Carolina-Charlotte. Shumpert, who’s
been sidelined since undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery Dec. 3,
gives Hewitt another reliable ball handler to make inside passes to
Lawal and Favors.
After winning just two games last season in the Atlantic Coast
Conference, Hewitt knows the Jackets’ best chance to win is to
maximize the presence of Favors, who could go high in the NBA
draft, and Lawal, a potential first-round pick as a junior.
Favors is averaging 12.9 points and nine rebounds. Lawal is
averaging 9.7 rebounds, but he scored only four points on 1 for 7
shooting against Florida State and took just six shots in an
11-point performance in last week’s win over Kennesaw State.
“We know as a group what we have to do,” Hewitt said. “I
think that has been established, going all the way back to (a
three-game trip last month to) Puerto Rico where we saw the good
and the bad. Obviously we need to stick with the good.”
Fisher led the Rams with nine points, but the senior guard from
nearby Marietta also had a game-high eight turnovers.
Marcus Wells’ layup at the 5:47 mark of the first half brought
Winston-Salem State within eight points, but the Jackets went on a
26-2 run that ended when Miller’s 3-pointer made it 50-18 with
After starting for the first time this season, Miller could
return to a reserve role when Shumpert comes back. Miller made 35
starts in his first two seasons at Georgia Tech.
“We have a lot of confidence in each other,” Miller said.
“We’re on the same page.”