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Marshall’s big night leads Tech women past Illinois

ATLANTA - With its leading scorer struggling to find her shot Wednesday, the Georgia Tech women’s basketball team showed its got plenty of other weapons.

Tyaunna Marshall had a season-high 27 points to lead four in double figures as Tech overwhelmed Illinois 93-69 in the Big 10/ACC Challenge at McCamish Pavilion.

Tech (5-2) won its third consecutive game and improved to 6-1 all-time in the annual challenge.

One of those double-figure scorers was Davis, who came in averaging nearly 19 points. The freshman finished with 16 points, thanks to 13 second-half points, but made only six of her 20 field goal attempts. Instead, it was Marshall’s night.

The senior guard hit half of her 24 field goal attempts, including four points early in the second half as the Yellow Jackets had a quick 8-0 run to go up 52-31.

“Ty Marshall obviously led the way offensively and defensively on both ends of the floor. She did a tremendous job of playing hard and setting the tone of how hard we were going to play,” said Tech MaChelle Joseph.

Illinois (5-4) got as close as 57-42 on a lay up by Ivory Crawford, who along with Jacqui Grant led the Champagne, Illinois school with 14 points.

Roddreka Rogers had consecutive field goals, part of a 10-point, 13-rebound night for Rogers and Davis had a lay up and a 3-pointer, the last of which came off a pass from Dawnn Maye for one of Maye’s season-high seven assists, putting Tech up 66-47 with 11:30 to play.

“I thought Dawnn Maye off the bench with her seven assists and 10 points was huge,” Joseph said.

It was a defensive struggle early on as each team missed nine of its first 12 shots.

Sarah Hartwell assisted on lay ups by Crawford and Grant to help get Illinois going, while Nariah Taylor had a put back to tie the game at 11-11.

Nia Oden hit a bucket and Alexis Smith followed by hitting 1-of-2 free throws to give the Illini a brief lead at 16-14.

Tech used a strong defense that held Illinois without a field goal for four and a half minutes and spent the next 1:43 building a cushion it wouldn’t relinquish.

Starting with Marshall’s bucket at the 9:32 mark and including a pair of steals by Maye that led to field goals and Rogers’ put back and two assists on baskets by Shayla Bivins, Tech scored the next 10 points and took a 24-16 lead.

Grant finally broke the Illini drought with a lay up at the six-minute mark and it was a 28-20 game after Hartwell’s lay up, but Aaliyah Whiteside scored the next seven points to give Tech an 35-20 lead.

Tech will host Alabama A&M Saturday at 4:30 p.m.