Originally created 02/22/99

No. 14 Georgia 98, Arkansas 82

ATHENS, Ga. -- As Georgia's best-ever free-throw shooter, Pam Irwin-Osbolt is a student of the art of shooting.

She got a good lesson Sunday guarding Arkansas' Wendi Willits, who hit a school-record nine of 13 3-pointers enroute to a career-high 33 points.

"She did very well," said Irwin-Osbolt. "When you have a good shooter like that, you expect her to hit a couple. But she just kept on making them."

No. 14 Georgia returned to the form of an 18-1 start Sunday with a 98-82 victory over Arkansas behind twins Coco and Kelly Miller, who scored 24 and 18 points respectively.

Georgia (21-5, 9-5 Southeastern Conference) had lost four of five before rebounding this week with victories over Florida and Arkansas (15-13, 5-9 SEC).

Willits entered the game as the nation's fifth-ranked 3-point shooter. Her nine 3-pointers were the most this year by any SEC player. Her 33 points were the most by any Arkansas player since 1995.

"When you shoot threes against Georgia, you're doing a hell of a job," said Arkansas coach Gary Blair. "That was as good of a shooting performance as I've seen. If she is not an all-SEC player, then we need to fire all the coaches because they are the ones who vote on it."

Georgia, which fell behind 22-11 midway through the first half, rallied for a 40-35 lead at the break.

Willits hit a pair of threes early in the second half before a 15-5 run by Georgia stretched its lead to 64-48 with 13:35 to play. It was during that stretch that Irwin-Osbolt was assigned to Willits.

"Pam played well on offense, hitting the threes," said Georgia coach Andy Landers, "but the thing she did well was defend Willits early in the second half."

Willits was not done, however, as she scored on a layup and her eighth 3-pointer of the game to bring Arkansas to within 68-61 with 9:58 remaining. Georgia then exerted its inside game.

The Lady Dogs went on a 14-5 run to lead 82-66 with six minutes to go, capped by two straight baskets by Coco Miller.

Four 3-pointers by Willits sparked Arkansas to its early 11-point lead, but Georgia responded in kind with four 3-pointers divided evenly between Irwin-Osbolt and Camille Murphy.

The Lady Dogs went ahead 24-23 with 7:46 to play as there were 11 lead changes in the first half.

Tennille Adams' jumper gave Arkansas its last lead at 31-30 with 3:46 remaining in the half before Coco Miller hit a pair of jumpers, putting the Lady Dogs ahead 38-31.

Georgia placed five players in double figures, including Tawana McDonald with 14, Irwin-Osbolt with 13 and Murphy with 11.

Arkansas got 13 each from Lonniya Bragg and Sytia Messer.


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