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Memphis falls short in an intense out-of-conference matchup against Georgia

Memphis vs. Georgia recap
Photo courtesy of Tony Walsh/UGA.

18 Memphis vs. Georgia Recap

For the second time this season, the Memphis Tigers have lost to an out-of-conference opponent. Their first defeat of the year came against an Iowa State team that played relentlessly for the entire game. Memphis had no answer on how to respond to the Cyclones scoring output. The result would be an Iowa State 19-point victory over the Tigers.

On Wednesday night, Memphis would seek to get back on the winning side of things when they went down to Athens to face the Southeastern Conference’s 2-5 Georgia Bulldogs. The Tigers’ performed a lot better compared to their 19-point defeat against the Cyclones on Friday night. However, the result would be the same as the Tigers losing their second game of the season (82-79). Memphis struggled to contain Georgia’s scoring onslaught in the first half but would show signs of life going into halftime.

Their stout defense would allow them to cut Georgia’s lead by only two (34-32). In the second half, the Tigers would take the lead over Georgia but could not maintain any momentum as Georgia played like their season was on the line. The game primarily came down to making big shots at the right time. Memphis could not accomplish that, despite their significant contributions on offense.

Six players finished the game with double-figures for Memphis. Landers Nolley led the team with 17 points, four rebounds, and four assists, and Alex Lomax added 14 points. Fellow teammates Jalen Duren and DeAndre Williams combined for a total of 22 points; they both fouled out in the closing minutes of the second half. Another positive from yesterday’s loss was the cut down on turnovers. Memphis committed only six in Wednesday’s game against Georgia.

In the post-game presser, head coach Penny Hardaway had some interesting things to say about the Tigers’ performance. “There aren’t enough guys in that locker room who care about winning unless they are the ones that are helping us win. It’s not team. That’s the danger of having a lot of talent. The talent has to want to play together & right now the talent, doesn’t want to play together.”

If that’s the vibe Hardaway has about the team, then it must be addressed immediately. The Memphis roster contains many high-end players, but a true leader must emerge and lead the program. Perhaps, a facilitator needs to be developed to put players in the right positions to contribute on the court. Currently, Memphis does not have that type of individual at the moment. The Tigers will remain on the road to face another out-of-conference opponent in the Ole Miss Rebels on Saturday, December 4.

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