Jackets prepare for Miami guards

When the No. 25 Georgia Tech women's basketball team welcomes Miami at 7 p.m. Wednesday, the Hurricanes will bring with them sophomores Riquna Williams and Shenise Johnson, arguably the ACC's best guard tandem.

They rank No. 2 and 3, respectively, in the conference in scoring, with Williams averaging 20.9 points per game and Johnson averaging 18. Both have scored in double figures in each game except one, when Williams scored seven at Miami (Ohio) -- and Johnson picked up the slack with 29 in a 75-61 victory.

It's going to present a defensive challenge for the Yellow Jackets (16-5, 2-3), who will try to do what they can to limit the two stars.

"When we play teams, they usually have one really good player, but they never have two who are averaging [close to] 20 points," said Georgia Tech guard Deja Foster. "With our defensive pressure, we'll be able to not let them get their averages. But we won't be able to shut them down totally."

They got a taste of trying to do so Sunday at Virginia, where the Yellow Jackets defended Monica Wright, the ACC's leading scorer with a 22.3-point average.

Wright scored 23 points in a 57-55 Virginia victory, and only one other Virginia player finished with double figures in scoring.

Tech coach MaChelle Joseph said Tech has to play its game, regardless of who's on the other side.

"We didn't go into Virginia trying to take away Monica Wright," Joseph said. "She ended up with 23, but she didn't get 39. We're going to play the way we play. We're just going to play our style. We're going to press, and we're going to trap.

"She just had to work for everything. That's what we're trying to do. I think that's what our presses do; they make them work for it."

And it's not just the guards who do the work. Tech guards Foster, Mo Bennett and Metra Walthour have a group of big forwards behind them, including 6-foot-5 Sasha Goodlett and 6-2 Brigitte Ardossi.

Foster said having good size under the basket gives the guards confidence to pressure the ball on the perimeter.

"Brigitte and Sasha are really tough," Foster said. "They have our backs on defense. We haven't really guarded penetration well. The fact that they're always there for us when we get beaten off the dribble helps a lot. Our goal is not to let them get by us."

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