HATTIESBURG, Miss. — The University of Georgia women’s basketball team used quick 8-0 runs to begin the first and second halves en route to a 77-58 win over Texas A&M-Corpus Christi in the opening round of the Lady Eagle Thanksgiving Classic on Friday night.
Georgia faces Southern Miss in the championship game at 5:30 p.m. today.
The Lady Bulldogs were led by Jasmine James, who scored a game-high 18 points, and Porsha Phillips, who added a double-double of 14 points and a career-high 15 rebounds.
Ashley Houts chipped in 16 points, seven rebounds and five assists in a relatively miniscule 32 minutes of action by her standards, and Anne Marie Armstrong scored 10 in her first career start.
“We were able to play a lot of people tonight, which was important because we’re playing three games in four days,” head coach Andy Landers said. “Everybody did certain things well, which is very pleasing. I continue to be pleased with out veterans and the example they set. They also are doing a good job incorporating and encouraging our younger players in what we try to do.”
James opened the second half with a three and a two and Phillips converted on an old-fashioned three-point play as the Lady Bulldogs stretched a 10-point halftime lead to 46-28 less than two minutes into the second half.
The Lady Islanders never pulled closer than 11 the rest of the way.
The Lady Bulldogs also started the game quickly. Houts opened the scoring with a three, followed by a Phillips jumper and a three from Armstrong as Georgia opened up an 8-0 lead just 1:49 into the contest.
The Lady Bulldogs spent the rest of the period trying to gain more distance. Georgia grabbed its first double-digit lead at 21-11 on a only to have Texas A&M-Corpus Christi reel off seven straight to close the gap to four.
A steal from James and an athletic catch and score by Phillips ignited an 11-2 surge that have the Lady Bulldogs their largest lead of the opening period, 36-23.