Georgia Tech has been solid at home under coach Paul Hewitt. Going on the road, though, is a whole other story.
The 25th-ranked Yellow Jackets look to shake their road woes Saturday when the visit Vanderbilt at Memorial Gymnasium.
Last season, Georgia Tech (6-2) went 10-5 at home, but only won one of 11 road games.
The Yellow Jackets have opened this season winning their first four home games and two of three at the Maui Invitational, but their first road game was again a struggle.
Georgia Tech lost at Miami 90-82 on Sunday, and is just 20-48 (.294) all-time on the road under Hewitt.
“When you score 82 points on the road and give up only 14 offensive rebounds to this team you’d probably come away with a win,” Hewitt said. “They shot the ball very well. I don’t think we guarded, especially off the dribble, particularly well. And we gave up 90 points, so we deserved to lose.”
Defense has been a concern for Hewitt all season with opponents able to score on the Yellow Jackets with ease. Georgia Tech allowed the Hurricanes to shoot 56.1 percent, and its last three opponents have averaged 83.7 points and shot 56.7 percent.
“You’ve got to make people miss,” Hewitt said. “You can’t hope that they miss. You have to make people miss. And I don’t think we did that enough. I don’t think we gave the effort we needed to give to make them miss like I know we’re capable of doing.”
While the defense has struggled lately, the offense has been able to keep the Jackets competitive.
Sophomore guard Lewis Clinch scored 22 points Sunday, and has scored at least 20 in his last three games. Clinch leads the Yellow Jackets in scoring, averaging 18 points, and has made 22-of-45 shots from beyond the 3-point arc (48.9 percent).
Javaris Crittenton had 19 points against the Hurricanes, while Ra’Sean Dickey also had 19 on 7-for-7 shooting.
Dickey scored 10 points on 4-of-4 shooting in Georgia Tech’s 76-67 win Jan. 3 over the Commodores (4-3) last season. Last year’s game was just the second meeting between these old SEC rivals in the past 42 years, and Vanderbilt leads the all-time series 36-32.
The Yellow Jackets have lost their last five games at Memorial Gymnasium, but haven’t played there since a 103-89 defeat Feb. 29, 1964.
The Commodores offense has been inconsistent this season. They beat Lipscomb 59-50 on Thursday despite shooting 36.5 percent two days after routing East Tennessee 104-62 while shooting 56.1 percent.
Shan Foster had five points on 1-of-7 shooting Thursday after scoring 50 while making 53.1 percent (17-for-32) of his shots the two previous games.
“Shan had a couple of shots that he missed that he’d normally make,” Vanderbilt coach Kelvin Stallings said. “For him to have five points and win is a great sign for our team.”
Foster had 19 points, but made just 3-of-13 3-pointers against the Yellow Jackets last season.
Senior Derrick Byars, who totaled 18 points and nine rebounds Thursday, scored 10 points against Tech last year.