Lady Jets defeat Albany Tech in NJCAA Region XVII tournament semi-finals
The nationally ranked South Georgia Technical College Lady Jets took care of business Friday night in a match-up against the fourth ranked Albany Tech Lady Titans in the semi-final round of the NJCAA Region XVII Division I tournament in Americus and earned the right to advance to the finals for the sixth consecutive season.
The Lady Jets defeated Albany Tech 84 – 51 to move to 19 – 0 on the season in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association regular season and tournament play and capture their 10th consecutive victory. The win placed the Lady Jets in the final round of the NJCAA Region XVII tournament on Saturday where they would face Georgia Highlands, who defeated Central Georgia Tech 80 – 78 on a last second shot to move into the finals also. This would be the third time in six seasons that South Georgia Tech and Georgia Highlands had met in the finals to battle for the Region XVII Tournament title.
Albany Tech did not give up easy in the quarter-final round action. The Lady Titans scored first and the two teams battled back and forth for the lead until the Lady Jets pulled ahead 17 – 14 at the end of the first half. The Lady Jets never looked back and widened the lead to 38 – 27 by the half. The Lady Jets continued to outscore the Lady Titans in the second half to take the 84 – 51 victory and move into the finals. Albany Tech finished the season at 8 – 11 in the conference match-ups and 16 – 14 overall.
Freshman Yasriyyah Wazeerud-Din came off the bench to lead the Lady Jets in scoring with 13 points. She also had three rebounds. She was followed by sophomores Ricka Jackson and Mari Hill who both had a good night with 12 points each. Ricka Jackson also had three rebounds and two assists and Hill finished with five rebounds, three assists and three steals.
Sophomore guard Alyssa Nieves added 11 points on the night to close out the double-digit scoring for the Lady Jets. Kamya Hollingshed contributed nine points, Anna McKendree had eight, Bigue Sarr, 7; and then Rio Yamazaki and Laky Samo tossed in three points each. Oumy Gueye, Fatou Pouye and Amar Edeh all scored two points.
“We did what we needed to do to advance to the finals,” said South Georgia Technical College Lady Jets head coach James Frey. “Albany Tech would have liked nothing better than to upset us tonight, but we were able to stay focused and move ahead to the finals.”
The Lady Jets will be seeking their third consecutive NJCAA Region XVII tournament title on Saturday at 2 p.m. in the Hangar on the Americus campus and the opportunity to advance to the NJCAA District J game and the NJCAA national tournament in Lubbock, Texas.