05 February 2012
Overcoming a peculiar habit of underperforming when they're not on national TV - the Tennessee Volunteers garnered a big time SEC win against the Georgia Bulldogs on Saturday. The nice win gave Tennessee Volunteers stalwarts another opportunity to cash-in at the expense of those Vegas/Reno oddsmakers as the Vols 73 - 62 victory came with an 11-point margin that was comfortably above their status as 7.5-point favs on the betting line.
Tennessee started out behind the visiting Bulldogs as Georgia knocked down two early three pointers and took a 6 - 0 lead. That was before freshman phenom Jarnell Stokes and senior Cameron Tatum scored a couple of buckets for Big Orange. The scoring festival continued for much of the first half as the two teams hit dueling shots from beyond the arc with the score board lighting-up like an old-fashioned pinball machine. The first half continued to go Georgia's way as the first seven minutes of play saw the Bulldogs hit four 3-point shots and they went on to take a startling 27 - 19 lead with just 4:55 left in the first half.
But that was the low point for Big Orange and - by the time the half was over - the Vols were showing their stuff with a 30 -28 lead. The second half saw Tennessee stumble as Georgia take a 39 - 32 lead with 16:22 left to play. But the Vols picked up the pace during the last 14-and-a-half minutes of play as they finally kicked their offense into high gear and blew past a Georgia Bulldog squad that was outgunned down the stretch.
As the dust settled the tale of the tape was revealed as the box score for Tennessee's Big Orange showed some scoring prowess as they hit 60% from 2-point range. But the real difference maker was Tennessee's success at the foul line as they knocked down an incredible total of 28 points from the charity stripe.
Talk about making them pay.
So - for those of us who are true Tennessee fans - chalk up a nice homecourt win and brace yourselves for a Feb. 8th showdown against the South Carolina Gamecocks as Big Orange seeks a win that propel the Vols up the SEC conference play ladder.