Stung By Reebok

By Jeff Lippman - November 06, 2007

It wasn't exactly the start of the season that Georgia Tech was hoping for when the Lady Jackets opened their exhibition season against Team Reebok's Premier Players.

Georgia Tech, a team that ranks No. 20 in its preseason Top 25, met the Reebok All-Stars on Nov. 4 in Atlanta and were down as much as 22 points with 12 minutes remaining before a furious comeback fell short and the Buzz dropped their first game of 2007-08, 80-79.

It was only an exhibition and there were plenty of bright spots for coach MaChelle Joseph's team, but a Top 25 team should not lose to these All-Star teams.

With that said, this Reebok Team has some excellent post-college players, including WNBA Rookie of the Year finalist Sidney Spencer, formerly of Tennessee's national championship team and currently a member of the Los Angeles Sparks.

Also comprising the 10-member Premier Players Reebok roster is former Georgia Tech player Kentrina Wilson, who Joseph said looked very odd playing with a different jersey on, former Tar Heel Leah Metcalf, former Lady Vols Spencer, Dominique Redding and Courtney McDaniel, Tenecia Pam and Fatima Maddox from Temple, Sherell Sowho and Yolanda Paige of West Virginia and Minnesota's Katie Alsdurf.

Leading the way for the Reebok Team was the aforementioned Spencer, who finished with 22 points, including going 9-for-9 from the free throw line, six rebounds and four steals in 32 minutes of action. Former UNC point guard Metcalf finished with 15 points, five assists and five steals in 35 minutes, but also had 11 turnovers.

For Georgia Tech, senior forward Janie Mitchell paced them in scoring with 21 points to go with six boards, and freshman Iasia Hemingway shined bright with 11 points and four rebounds in only 19 minutes of action in her collegiate debut.

Also in double figures for Tech were seniors Jill Ingram (who didn't start but finished with 13 points and five steals) and Chioma Nnamaka, who finished with 15 points, and junior Jacqua Williams, who had a complete game scoring 12 points to go with five boards, four assists, three steals and two blocked shots.

Freshman Alex Montgomery got a starting nod and although she only scored three points in 23 minutes of action and turned the ball over five times, she did grab a team-high eight rebounds.

With the freshmen getting better and better and the senior leaders looking solid, Tech just used a very sluggish start to get behind by too great a margin to fully come back against a solid Reebok Team.

This isn't the end of the world for Georgia Tech. This is the time of the year to lose. Exhibition games don't count against your win-loss record, but the Buzz will have to learn and grow from this loss to make sure it doesn't happen again during the regular season.

Posted by Jeff Lippman at 12:46 PM on November 06, 2007

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