Georgia Tech parlayed a huge rebounding advantage into an 83-73 win on Thursday over Arkansas in the semifinals of the Preseason NIT at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
In improving to 4-1, the Yellow Jackets dominated the Razorbacks (2-2) on the glass 44-24, grabbing nearly as many offensive rebounds (16) as Arkansas managed defensive boards (17). Forward Charles Mitchell had his way inside, muscling for 18 points and 18 rebounds.
Guard Adam Smith, a Virginia Tech transfer, and guard Marcus Georges-Hunt each scored 19 points for Georgia Tech. They combined to sink 8 of 12 on 3-pointers, with Smith nailing 5 of 7. Center Ben Lammers added 10 points and seven rebounds.
Four players reached double figures for the Razorbacks, led by 17 points from guard Dusty Hannahs, a Texas Tech transfer. Guard Anthlon Bell contributed 14 and center Moses Kingsley just missed a double-double with 13 points and nine rebounds. Freshman guard Jimmy Whitt added 10 points.
The Yellow Jackets led 41-38 at halftime, but the Razorbacks owned the lead for most of the first 10 minutes in the second half. However, Georges-Hunt’s 3-pointer with 10:18 left put Georgia Tech ahead to stay.
Georgia Tech will play Villanova or Stanford in Friday’s championship game.