W-Basketball splits last two conference games

A split of its last two games of the season was enough to earn Tech’s women’s basketball team a first-round bye in the ACC Tournament. Tech took down North Carolina 64-57 on Friday, Feb. 26 on Senior Night but fell in the regular-season finale against N.C. State 54-46 on Sunday, Feb. 28.

The Jackets finished the regular season 19-9 overall, with an 8-6 mark against ACC opponents. They have earned the No. 4 seed in the conference tournament and will play either Wake Forest or Miami in the second round on Friday, March 5.

The Feb. 26 game served as Tech’s Senior Night, and before tip-off the Jackets honored their two seniors, forward Brigitte Ardossi and center Tiffany Blackmon.

Ardossi was a solid forward for Tech for three years before emerging as a star this season. Her 15.8 points per game ranks fourth in the ACC and her 7.5 rebounds per game puts her at ninth in the conference.

Blackmon has seen her minutes decline over the past two seasons, but in 2006-07 and 2007-08 she was a key reserve in Tech’s frontcourt. She recorded a combined 30 blocks over those two seasons.

Both players were in the starting lineup on Friday. It marked Blackmon’s first career start.

The game itself was a back-and-forth affair that saw 10 ties and 17 lead changes. Tech pulled out to a 19-10 lead with just over eight minutes to go in the first half and led 27-24 at halftime.

The second half was a tense battle in which neither team led by more than four until the end. Ultimately, Ardossi’s 18 points and junior guard Alex Montgomery’s 20 points and 15 rebounds led Tech to the 64-57 victory.

“We made history tonight…22 wins in the regular season, that’s never been done before [at Tech]. A first round bye in the ACC Tournament, never been done before,” said Head Coach MaChelle Joseph.

Sunday’s regular-season finale did not go so well for Tech. The Jackets committed 26 turnovers–including 18 in the first half, when they scored just 16 points.

Ardossi’s 18 points and 11 rebounds was not enough, as Tech shot just 32.7 percent from the field in the 51-45 loss.

“I’m just very proud of our team and what we’ve accomplished over these last four years. I can’t…think that this is the end because it’s not. We still have…the ACC Tournament and the NCAA Tournament,” Ardossi said.