The Georgia Bulldogs limped into Nashville Wednesday night banged up and with history not on their side. However, they put forth a solid effort and escaped with a 70-67 win over the Commodores.
Georgia jumped out to an early lead thanks to some hot shooting offensively and a stingy defense. However, like all of their conference games this season, a big lead slipped away late and provided some nervous moments for Mark Fox down the stretch.
The Bulldogs led 58-45 with 7:11 remaining before the Commodores comeback began. Matthew Fisher-Davis connected on a three-pointer to cut Georgia's lead to 63-57 with 2:22 remaining. A Riley LaChance's three-pointer cut the lead to just 63-61 with 29 seconds remaining.
The Bulldogs have been plagued by poor free throw shooting and struggled from the line for much of Wednesday's game. However, with the game on the line, Charles Mann and J.J. Frazier converted 7-8 in the last 29 seconds to seal the win. Vanderbilt wouldn't go away quietly. LaChance banked in a three with nine seconds left to cut the lead back to 67-64. After two free throws from Frazier, LaChance struck again with a leaning three-pointer to trim the lead to just two points with 0.8 showing on the clock. Frazier went back to the line and made 1-2 but Vanderbilt was unable to get off a game-tying attempt.
Georgia got big performances from Kenny Gaines and Marcus Thornton. Gaines hit five three-pointers on his way to 17 points. Thornton scored nine of his 16 in the first half and helped stake the Bulldogs to an early lead. His defense was solid as well holding Vanderbilt's Damian Jones to just 10 points on 3-10 shooting.
Frazier finished with 11 for the Bulldogs while Charles Mann added eight. Mann was just 2-5 from the field but handed out six assists to go along with four turnovers.
Georgia shot 49 percent for the game and connected on 10-17 three-point attempts. Vanderbilt shot just 41 percent from the field and was 9-27 from beyond-the-arc.
The Bulldogs return home for a matchup against the Florida Gators on Saturday.