Charles Mann and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope each scored in double figures as Georgia topped Tennessee 78-68 Saturday afternoon at Stegeman Coliseum.
Caldwell-Pope led Georgia (14-15, 8-8) with 25 points and nine rebounds. Mann tied a career-high with 18 points. Georgia’s win snapped Tennessee’s six-game winning streak.
“We have had four games in a row that came down to the final possession, said head coach Mark Fox. “I talked to everyone and said that everybody needs to make one more play. Fortunately for us today. Kenny Gaines made a big basket in the second half. I thought Brandon Morris made a big basket in the second half. Charles Mann was really good in the second half. Those three freshman were huge. This group is growing. For five or six weeks, we have had a chance to win every game. You are not going to win every game until you learn some valuable lessons. It was important for us to get back off the mat.”
Tennessee (17-11, 9-7) started the game on a 7-0 run, but Georgia followed with a 15-4 streak to take a 15-11 lead midway through the half. With three minutes left, Sherrard Brantley hit a three-pointer to give Georgia an 11 points lead, but after a late surge by the Volunteers, Georgia took a 25-22 lead into the halftime break.
In the second frame, back-to-back three-pointers by Caldwell-Pope and Sherrard Brantley gave the Bulldogs a 37-31 lead with 15 minutes left, but Tennessee responded with a 10-1 run to take a one-point lead.
With just under four minutes remaining, freshmen Charles Mann and Kenny Gaines, along with Caldwell-Pope led Georgia on a 9-2 run, building a 12-point , 62-50 lead. Tennessee shrunk the lead to as few as seven, but the Bulldogs shot 5-of-6 from the free throw line in the final two minutes to seal the victory.
The win mark Georgia’s first series sweep of Tennessee since 2001.
Georgia returns to Stegeman Coliseum to face Kentucky Thursday. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. and the game will be televised on ESPN.
• The starting line-up was Caldwell-Pope, D. Williams, V. Williams, Brantley and Florveus. The lineup is now 2-0 this season with the previous win coming at South Carolina.
• Caldwell-Pope remains one of just 11 players in all of NCAA Division I that have scored in double figures in each of their team’s games. He’s the only SEC player to accomplish this feat and one of just five from the “BCS” leagues to do so.
• Charles Mann tied a career-high with 18 points
The Series: Georgia still trails in the all-time series against the Volunteers 92-58, but improves 39-30 to when the series is played in Athens. It’s the first series sweep for Georgia since the 2000-01 season.
Next Up: Georgia plays it last home game on Thursday when Kentucky come to town. Kentucky leads the all-time series 115-25 and has won three straight over the Bulldogs.
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