Georgia Tech guard Ty Marshall, shown here against Wake Forest, became Georgia Tech’s all-time leading scorer Thursday. Photo courtesy of ramblinwreck.com
ATLANTA - In a frantic Atlantic Coast Conference game full of exciting freshmen, a senior stole the show in the calmest way possible. Ty Marshall sank 3 of 4 free throws in the final 11 seconds to become Tech’s all-time leading scorer in a 94-91 victory over No. 13 North Carolina at McCamish Pavilion.
Tech (15-8, 5-5) won for the first time in seven tries against ranked opponents and defeated a top 25 team for the first time since besting Georgetown in March, 2012.
Marshall picked up the last of her game-high 32 points on a free throw with 4.3 seconds left for point No. 1,956, eclipsing Kisha Ford’s old program record.
“I’m just grateful, I feel blessed right now,” said Marshall. “Right now it feels unbelievable.”
“I can’t say how happy I am…no words for the fact that Ty Marshall broke the record at home with a performance like she (had). I don’t think it could happen to a better person,” said Tech coach MaChelle Joseph.
It wasn’t an easy victory by any stretch of the imagination. North Carolina (17-6, 5-4) erased a seven-point deficit and went up 90-89 on Latifah Coleman’s lay up with 36 seconds remaining. Freshman Kaela Davis followed with the last of her 20 points on a strong drive and lay up that put tech up 91-90. North Carolina’s Xylina McDaniel appeared to have an easy lay up at the other end, but Dawnn Maye stripped the ball and a jump ball call went Georgia Tech’s way.
“One of the things (Maye) does…the thing she values is defense, and she’s our defensive stopper,” Tech coach MaChelle Joseph said. “She knocked the ball out of (McDaniel’s) hands, and made a huge defensive play.”
Marshall made 1 of 2 for a two-point lead and Coleman just missed what would’ve been a tying layup, instead settling for a 1 of 2 trip to the line that made it 92-91. Marshall hit two more from the charity stripe and North Carolina’s tying three-point attempt wasn’t close.
Davis’ bucket at the 1:51 mark put Tech up 89-82, but North Carolina came storming back.
The Tar Heels got lay ups from Brittany Rountree and two from Coleman and a pair of free throws from McDaniel and the 8-0 run gave the visitors a one-point lead.
Danielle Butts (20 points) tied the game at 63-63 when the junior guard put back a missed free throw at the 11:31 mark. Prior to that Tar Heels leading scorer and freshman Diamond Deshields (team-high 22 points) had picked up her fourth foul and headed to the bench. Tech followed with a three-minute-long run to grab a double-digit lead.
Davis missed 16 of her first 20 field goal attempts, but the freshman hit a 3-pointer in the corner and had a short jumper as a 14-4 spurt put the Yellow Jackets up 77-67 with 8 1/2 minutes to go. That forced North Carolina to burn a timeout. The Tar Heels stayed in the game and trailed just 81-77 after a tough lay up by Allisha Gray for two of the freshman’s 20 points, with 4 1/2 minutes left.
“This is a signature win,” said Joseph. “We all know how tough this conference is. We feel good about where we are.”