Down five points with five minutes left, things looked bleak for Georgia Tech late on Saturday in McCamish Pavilion. They were about to lose to UNC Wilmington and replay an all-too-familiar scene from last year.
But youth prevailed down the stretch for the Yellow Jackets when freshmen Marcus Georges-Hunt and Robert Carter, Jr. combined for 11 points in the next four minutes to keep Georgia Tech in the win column, and make head coach Brian Gregory force out a smile. Georgia Tech won by a final score of 73-66.
As the Jackets improved to 6-2, Tech's head man told the Atlanta-Journal Constitution that he had mixed feelings about the way the game went.
"I'm not pleased with the way we played, but I'm pleased with the way we finished," coach Brian Gregory said. "Our execution in the last five minutes was exceptional, both defensively and offensively."
The difference, of course, was Georges-Hunt and Carter, Jr., who combined for 29 points and have made an immense impact in Atlanta this season. Georges-Hunt averages a team-high 11.8 points per game and Carter adds a team-high 6.0 rebounds per game. And when they added Saturday's clutch stretch performance to their already notable contributions, Gregory was in the mood to issue a telling quote.
"We probably would not have won this game last year," he said.
The Yellow Jackets now have more than a week off before they take on Alabama State on Dec. 17.