Vanderbilt Beats Cold-Shooting Georgia
Vanderbilt (12-3, 1-1 SEC) took an eight-point halftime lead and cruised to a 73-66 win at Memorial Gym.
Festus Ezeli and John Jenkins had 18 points apiece, and Jeffery Taylor added 15 -- including an emphatic first half dunk -- to pace the Commodores. The Bulldogs outrebounded Vandy, but Georgia star Trey Thompkins struggled from the floor, finishing with only 12 points off 5-of-14 shooting.
Travis Leslie -- perhaps the league's most athletic player -- led the Bulldogs with 21 points and 13 rebounds. Gerald Robinson added 20 for Georgia (12-3, 1-1), which was unable to knock down too many shots in the quirky Nashville gym.
How It Was Won: Foul shooting. The 'Dores got to the line for 20 more shots than the Bulldogs, accounting for more points than the difference of the game. Call it home-cooking or what you will, but Vandy was more physical and took the game to the aggressive Bulldogs -- who were able to bully a young Kentucky team Saturday when referees decided to swallow their whistles.
How It Was Lost: Plain shooting. Georgia made only 25-of-73 shots -- just 5-of-21 from beyond the arc -- which are well below its season percentages. Dustin Ware -- a 43 percent shooter on the year -- was the most egregious offender, making only 1-of-9 shots from the floor.
Where to From Here: Both teams will remain in the thick of the SEC championship race, given that neither of them slip against inferior competition. Georgia has already slain Kentucky, but Vanderbilt, too, has had a knack for knocking off the 'Cats in recent years. It's no secret again this year: The championship will go through Lexington.