Georgia Tech at Clemson
When: Noon Saturday
Where: Littlejohn Coliseum, Clemson, S.C.
ATLANTA — Terry Rozier scored 22 points and darted into the lane to hit the go-ahead basket with 20 seconds remaining, helping No. 17 Louisville rally from a 13-point deficit with under 10 minutes to go for a 52-51 victory over Georgia Tech on Monday night.
In the frantic final seconds, Marcus Georges-Hunt tied it at 48 for the Yellow Jackets with a drive to the hoop, but Louisville (22-6, 10-5 Atlantic Coast Conference) took off the other way for Rozier's basket just seconds later.
Georgia Tech (12-16, 3-13) turned it over and had another attempt at a tying basket blocked. Wayne Blackshear hit two free throws with 4.8 seconds left to clinch the victory, offsetting a desperation 3-pointer by the home team just before the buzzer.
The Yellow Jackets were seemingly in control after Demarco Cox made a layup for their biggest lead, 41-28 with 9:40 remaining. But Rozier made back-to-back 3s, and Blackshear also hit a 3 to highlight an 11-0 run.
Just like that, Louisville was right back in the game, sending the large contingent of red-clad fans into a "Let's Go Cards!" frenzy. They closed the game on a 24-10 run.
For much of the night, the Cardinals appeared to be headed to another loss. They went completely cold over the final 8 minutes of the first half, managing only three points on their last 13 possessions. Louisville went 1 of 9 from the field during that stretch, in addition to turning it over four times.
Georgia Tech closed the half on a 10-3 run and led 24-17 at the break. It was the third time in the last six games the Cardinals were held under 20 points in the first half.
Louisville played one day after starting guard Chris Jones was kicked off the team. He was the team's leader in assists (3.7 per game) and its third-leading scorer (13.7 points).
Jones had been suspended for one game, returned to play in Saturday's victory over Miami, then was booted off the squad for good. Coach Rick Pitino would not say why the player was dismissed but said it's time for the Cardinals to move on.
According to a university police report, Jones was initially suspended just hours after he sent a text to a woman threatening to "smack" her.
Louisville: The Cardinals were held to 13 points in the first half of a 52-47 loss to No. 2 Virginia on Feb. 7, and trailed Miami 29-19 at halftime last Saturday before rallying for 55-53 win. ... Louisville finished 5 of 16 from 3-point range. ... Blackshear was the only other player in double figures with 10 points. ... The Cardinals shot only 7 of 17 on free throws.
Georgia Tech: The final basket by Tadric Jackson was the Yellow Jackets' only 3-pointer of the game. They went 1 of 11 from beyond the arc. ... Georges-Hunt led Georgia Tech with 13 points, and Cox had 11. ... Georgia Tech had a 40-34 edge on the boards but also struggled at the foul line, going 4 of 10.
Louisville: Plays at Florida State on Saturday.
Georgia Tech: Travels to Clemson on Saturday.