The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
Since 1888
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.

Vanderbilt adds to NCAA Tournament résumé with 72-55 Senior Day win over Georgia

Jordyn Cambridge scored her 1,000th career point and Iyana Moore had 28 points to lead the Commodores over the Bulldogs.
Justine+Pissot+launches+the+ball+from+the+3-point+line+as+a+defender+reaches+to+block%2C+as+captured+on+March+3%2C+2024.+%28Hustler+Multimedia%2FSavannah+Walske%29
Savannah Walske
Justine Pissot launches the ball from the 3-point line as a defender reaches to block, as captured on March 3, 2024. (Hustler Multimedia/Savannah Walske)

On Senior Day in Memorial Gymnasium, Vanderbilt captured its ninth conference win of the season in its regular season finale, defeating the Georgia Bulldogs 72-55. Contributing to an already strong NCAA Tournament case, the Commodores snatched the lead three minutes into the game and did not relinquish it despite a few impressive runs from the Bulldogs. The victory marked the first time in 11 seasons that Vanderbilt reached nine SEC wins. 

“I feel great about [an NCAA Tournament bid],” head coach Shea Ralph said after the game. “We needed to win these last three games and finish strong, and we did that. I don’t know if we could have done any more to make sure that we’re in the tournament.”

Despite shooting just 38% from the field as a team, the Commodores were able to win largely because of a superstar performance from Iyana Moore. The junior guard amassed 28 points on 7-of-12 shooting in an impressive three-level scoring display. Moore’s efforts were supplemented by red-hot shooting from Justine Pissott, who accounted for 12 points on 50% shooting from behind the arc. 

It was a slow opening few minutes from Memorial Gymnasium as both sides struggled to find an offensive rhythm, with the first eight possessions of the game going scoreless. Former Commodore and current Bulldog De’Mauri Flornoy finally broke the deadlock with a midrange jumper just under three minutes in. Vanderbilt responded with a 10-0 run to force the Bulldogs into a quick timeout. The Bulldogs punched back to close out the first quarter of action, but seven points from Moore kept the Commodores up 17-10 to close the frame. 

Moore picked up where she left off in the second quarter, knocking down two free throws to begin the second quarter, but the Bulldogs began to chip away at Vanderbilt’s lead. Following a 2:30 scoring drought from Vanderbilt, Ralph was forced into a timeout with Vanderbilt’s lead down to three points with six minutes remaining in the half. 

The Commodores locked up the Bulldogs for the rest of the quarter, though, with a huge block from Jordyn Cambridge highlighting a quarter in which the Bulldogs shot just 4-for-16. While holding the Bulldogs scoreless for the last five minutes of the half, Vanderbilt was able to build a lead behind Justin Pissot, who went 3-of-4 from behind the arc in the half. Two more points from Moore to end the quarter stretched Vanderbilt’s lead to 30-18 heading into halftime.

Two quick free throws from Khamil Pierre marked a strong start to the third quarter for the Commodores, who again kept Georgia scoreless for nearly the first two minutes of the half. The Bulldogs started to chip away at Vanderbilt’s sudden double-digit lead, but a tough and-1 conversion from Moore put the Commodores’ lead back at 13. Following a rebound and putback from Sacha Washington and a Bulldogs’ timeout, the Commodores led 41-27 with just over five minutes remaining in the quarter. 

Despite Vanderbilt’s burgeoning lead, Georgia continued to fight back. Two consecutive travels on Washington hurt Vanderbilt’s attack, while the Bulldogs began to find their feet on offense. The Bulldogs put together an impressive 11-2 run during the final minutes of the third quarter behind an impressive stretch from forward Javyn Nicholson. 

To close the quarter, though, was a special moment from Cambridge that helped her eclipse 1,000 career points. 

The sides traded baskets to open the final quarter, with Georgia cutting the Commodores’ lead to seven with just over six minutes remaining. Yet, as they did all afternoon, Vanderbilt’s defense and Moore continued to keep the game out of reach. Following a few defensive stops, 3-pointers and a steal that vaulted Cambridge to Vanderbilt’s all-time steals leader, Vanderbilt manufactured a 7-0 run that put them up by 14 with just under five minutes remaining. Vanderbilt’s double-digit lead would hold until the clock hit all zeroes.

With a strong regular season behind them, the Commodores will await to find their matchup for the SEC tournament starting on March 6.

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About the Contributors
Anish Mago
Anish Mago, Former Deputy Sports Editor
Anish Mago ('24) is from West Windsor, N.J., and is studying economics and political science in the College of Arts and Science. He previously served as a staff writer for the Sports section. When not writing for The Hustler, Anish enjoys playing basketball and rooting for all Philly sports. He can be reached at .
Savannah Walske
Savannah Walske, Staff Photographer
Savannah Walske (‘26) is from San Francisco and is double majoring in psychology and Spanish in the College of Arts and Science. When not shooting for The Hustler, you can find her playing guitar, photographing pretty Californian landscapes and obsessing over her dog. You can contact her at [email protected].
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