February 1, 2003
(Athens-AP) -- After struggling most of the game, Ezra Williams hit three straight 3-pointers in the closing minutes to lead Number 15 Georgia to a 67-63 victory over Number 21 Mississippi State tonight.
Steve Thomas and Chris Daniels carried Georgia (13-5, 5-2 Southeastern Conference) until Williams took over at the end. Mississippi State (13-5, 3-4) led 59-54 after Winsome Frazier hit a towering, off-balance trey with 3:50 remaining.
Timmy Bowers probably could have clinched it on State's next possession, but he put up an airball. That gave Georgia its chance. Williams, who was 2-of-12 shooting at the time, swished a shot from well outside the arc to boost his confidence. Derrick Zimmerman missed a driving shot, and Williams sank another 3 to give Georgia a 60-59 lead with 1:50 to go.
After Zimmerman missed again, Jarvis Hayes rimmed out a 3-pointer for Georgia. But Daniels scrambled for the offensive rebound and found Williams lurking at the arc. With a clear look at the basket, he sank his third straight 3 with 54 seconds remaining to essentially clinch the victory.
Williams finished with 17 points. The 3-pointer was an unlikely weapon for Georgia, which shot only 5-of-24 outside the arc. State wasn't much better, going 5-of-21.