As of Friday, March 1, 2013
© Copyright 2013
Gwinnett Daily Post
Tennessee looks to extend its six-game SEC winning streak when the Volunteers travel to Georgia today.
The Volunteers knocked off then-No. 25 Kentucky 88-58 on Feb. 16 and most recently No. 6 Florida 64-58 on Tuesday, rising from the conference cellar to a tie for fifth place. They have won the half-dozen games by an average of 11.8 points while shooting 46.6 percent from the field and 42.5 percent from 3-point range. Their last loss came on Feb. 6, a 68-62 defeat in their first matchup with the Bulldogs. They have won 15 of the last 20 games in the series.
After reeling off five straight SEC wins midway through its conference slate, Georgia has lost four of its last five. After a 62-54 OT win over South Carolina on Feb. 23, the Bulldogs blew a 17-point lead and lost to Vanderbilt 63-62 on a Kevin Bright jumper with under a second left Wednesday. Georgia (13-15, 7-8), which ranks 326th in scoring at 59.8 points, hasn't scored more than 62 points in regulation since their victory over Tennessee (17-10, 9-6) three-and-a-half weeks ago.
The game will be televised at 1:45 p.m. on the SEC Network.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope paces the Bulldogs with 17.7 points, 6.9 rebounds and 2.1 steals per game, shooting 80 percent at the free-throw line. Caldwell-Pope has scored in double figures every game tand dropped 24 points on 5 of 7 3-point shooting against Tennessee in their first matchup. He hauled in a career-high 14 rebounds against the Commodores. Nemanja Djurisic and Charles Mann add 7.8 and 6.2 points respectively for Georgia, which sits ninth in the SEC standings.
A trio of Volunteers has led the turnaround. Jordan McRae (15.3 ppg) is averaging 28 points over his last three contests. McRae scored a career-high 34 points on 13 of 18 shooting from the field and 6 of 6 shooting from beyond the arc against LSU on Feb. 19. Jarnell Stokes (12.6 ppg, 9.2 rpg) is the SEC's leading rebounder and has grabbed 10-plus rebounds in nine of Tennessee's last 10 games. And Trae Golden (12.1 ppg, 4 apg) also has 30- and 20-point games in the last week. The reigning SEC Player of the Week poured in a career-high 32 points against Texas A&M on Feb. 23.
Notes: Tennessee's win streak is its longest of the season and the second-longest active streak among major conference teams. Georgetown has won nine in a row. ... A Volunteers' victory would give them their first four-game road SEC win streak since February 2008. ... Stokes averages a double-double in conference play with 13.6 points and 10.5 rebounds.