ATLANTA, Georgia — Even though time was running out, East Tennessee State coach Steve Forbes was happy to see senior Ge'Lawn Guyn square up to take the game-winning shot, even with two defenders in his face.
Guyn, a transfer from Cincinnati, knocked down the 3-pointer with 3 seconds remaining to give the Buccaneers a 69-68 win over Georgia Tech on Sunday. The senior finished with 24 points, 16 of them in the second half, to help East Tennessee come back from a nine-point deficit.
"(Guyn) has played at the highest level before," Forbes said. "You always want a guy on your team that's willing to do that. That's the way it is on the road. Somebody has to make a big shot and he did. He wanted to take it. Some guys don't want to take that shot, but he did."
Georgia Tech called timeout with 8 seconds left but could not get off a final shot.
East Tennessee (3-1) also got 12 points apiece from T.J. Cromer and A.J. Merriweather.
Georgia Tech (3-1) was led by Marcus Georges-Hunt with 20 points and Nick Jacobs with 13 points. Charles Mitchell had 10 points and 11 rebounds for his fourth double-double of the season. Forward Nick Jacobs had 13 points and guard Adam Smith scored 10.
"Give Steve's team a lot of credit," Georgia Tech coach Brian Gregory said. "They were able to control the pace and tempo and we didn't respond well to that. When you let the game into the last minute anything can happen."
Georgia Tech led 65-64 after Mitchell made two free throws with one minute remaining and extended the lead to 67-64 on Georges-Hunt's slam.
The Yellow Jackets opted to foul Guyn, who made two free throws to cut the lead to 67-66. Georges-Hunt then made one of two free throws with 8 seconds left, to give Georgia Tech a 68-66 lead, but allow East Tennessee a chance to win the game.
Georgia Tech: After shooting 71.2 percent in the first half of the last game against Green Bay, the Yellow Jackets shot only 40.7 percent in the opening half and 40.7 percent for the game.
East Tennessee State: The Bucs won the game by scoring 36 points in the paint, 14 more than Georgia Tech. The Bucs also had 11 points off turnovers and 14 second-chance points. East Tennessee also shot 57.7 percent from the field in the second half.
Georgia Tech senior Marcus Georges-Hunt was 9 of 10 at the line, but his one miss gave East Tennessee a chance to win the game on the last-second shot instead of forcing an overtime.
East Tennessee had been pounded 86-51 by Villanova on Friday night. To motivate his team coach Steve Forbes wrote one word on the blackboard before the game: "Compete."
East Tennessee State won the game in the paint, where they outscored Georgia Tech 36-22. The Bucs had more second-chance points (14-6) and more points off turnovers (11-7).
"It's all fun and good when you're running up and down, but you've still to get defensive stops and you've still got to control the glass. We didn't do a good job of that at all for 40 minutes." - Georgia Tech coach Brian Gregory, whose team had scored 100 points in two of its first three games.
Georgia Tech plays Arkansas at the NIT Season Tipoff in Brooklyn on Thursday.
East Tennessee State plays at Charleston Southern on Tuesday.