Georgia Tech rebounds after devastating loss

GEORGIA TECH 78, ALBANY 51

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ATLANTA --- Georgia Tech coach Paul Hewitt hopes his team fell as far as it could earlier this week.


He knows the Yellow Jackets will hear about their humiliating loss at Kennesaw State for the rest of the season.

"I told the guys that we can take two approaches on this," Hewitt said. "We can act like Monday night never happened or we can never forget about Monday night and make sure we build on it."

Mfon Udofia and Daniel Miller each added 10 points as the Yellow Jackets sought to move past the 17-point defeat to an Atlantic Sun Conference school that's 21 miles north of the Georgia Tech campus.

Against Albany, the Yellow Jackets (2-1) moved the ball consistently during the first half, rarely settling for quick 3-point attempts that often doom them when the shot misfires and nobody grabs an offensive rebound.

Some bad habits recurred in the second half as Albany outscored Georgia Tech 32-29.

"When we don't play a style that moves the ball and gets the defense to move and we take quick shots, we're not a good basketball team," Hewitt said. "There's nobody on this team that's going to get six to seven offensive rebounds a game, so we have to value every offensive possession and guard like we guarded in the first half."

The Jackets took their biggest lead at 34 on Shumpert's layup early in the second half. They scored 32 points off 25 turnovers by the Great Danes.

Tim Ambrose scored 16 points to lead Albany (0-3). Logan Aronhalt finished with 14 for the Great Danes.

"We had made a change to our lineup because our best player (Mike Black) was out, and he is our point guard," Albany coach Will Brown said. "We had a freshman, Ralph Watts, who started the first two games for us, and we decided to start Jacob Iati tonight, so we've got two young guys we threw to the wolves."

Hewitt kept his starting lineup intact for the third straight game, but sophomore guard Glen Rice Jr. played only 11 minutes and went scoreless for the first time since Georgia Tech lost at Virginia last Jan. 13.

Shumpert wasn't trying to read too much into the results from Monday and Wednesday night. The junior guard was pleased that his team had a spirited practice on Tuesday after a dreadfully quiet bus ride home down I-75 the previous night.

"I've been on that losing team when the next day everybody is sort of lax and lazy and just down," Shumpert said. "There was nobody really down. Everybody was sort of excited to just come out and prove everybody wrong. We had a quick turnaround. We didn't have long to think about it."

Shumpert knows Hewitt, who has just one winning season in the Atlantic Coast Conference since he arrived at Georgia Tech in the spring of 2000, is under fire for the team's poor start.

The Jackets also played sluggishly in their opener, beating Charleston Southern 52-39, but finished with their lowest point total in a victory under Hewitt.

"We know what's going on, but we don't pay it any mind," Shumpert said. "We've got to go out there and play. Coach doesn't put on a uniform and play. We have to run his stuff. Yeah, we have to execute it, but we don't have to turn the ball over. We don't have to miss rebounds, miss free throws, stuff like that."

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