Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

GU Falls at Marquette, 83-69, Sinks to Fifth

Georgetown’s bad habits reared their ugly heads in Milwaukee Saturday afternoon, as careless turnovers and poor free-throw shooting doomed the No. 11 Hoyas (22-7, 12-6 Big East) in a an 83-69 loss to No. 8 Marquette (25-6, 13-4 Big East).

The Blue and Gray dropped to fifth in the conference standings with the loss and missed out on a chance to secure a double-bye in the Big East tournament. More concerning than missing out on the double-bye, though, was the role poor defense played in Georgetown’s second consecutive road loss.

The Hoyas were bothered early and often by the hosts’ swarming defense, as the Golden Eagles employed a 3/4-court press with great success for much of the game. Sophomore point guard Markel Starks came off the bench for the third game in a row, leaving senior guard Jason Clark as the team’s primary ballhandler. Unlike against Villanova and Notre Dame, this move didn’t pay off as Clark finished with eight turnovers and needed 14 shots to score 11 points. He made just one of seven three-point attempts, and is just 13 for his last 49 from long distance.

Clark wasn’t the only senior to struggle for Head Coach John Thompson III, though. Center Henry Sims — who, like Clark, excelled in Mondays Senior Night win over Notre Dame — fouled out with nearly 10 minutes left in the game. The Baltimore native had two first-half dunks and pulled down nine rebounds but scored only five points and had just two assists.

On the other side of the court, though, the seniors dominated. Forward Jae Crowder and guard Darius Johnson-Odom finished with 26 and 17 points, respectively, and thoroughly deserved the standing ovations they got when they checked out for the final time with less than a minute left. Crowder, a strong contender for Big East player of the year honors, also pulled down 14 rebounds and padded his conference-leading steals total with five more.

The Golden Eagles opened up a 7-2 lead to start the game, but the Hoyas responded with a 10-2 run punctuated by a slashing Sims dunk to take a 12-9 lead. The hosts came back with an 11-2 run of their own, though, to take the lead for good. The Blue and Gray kept the game close for the remainder of the half, but poor shooting from the field (33 percent) and a horrendous effort from the free-throw line (46 percent) left the Hoyas down 10 at the half.

After halftime, things quickly went from bad to worse. The teams traded layups on their opening possessions, but Marquette then ripped off a 7-0 run to extend the lead to 17. Sophomore forward Jamil Wilson punctuated that run with an alley-oop in transition after a Clark turnover, but was assessed a technical for hanging on the rim. Junior forward Hollis Thompson hit the technical free throws and then made a corner three to spark a 12-3 run, but that would be the closest the Hoyas got.

Critical to Marquette’s response to the run was an offensive foul drawn by Crowder. Freshman forward Otto Porter, who scored a career-high 19 points in the loss, had just hit a midrange jumper to draw the Blue and Gray within eight with about 15 minutes left in the game. The Bradley Center crowd was relatively quiet, likely remembering the 17-point lead the Golden Eagles had blown at Verizon Center in January. Following a missed Crowder three, the Hoyas had a chance to make it a two-possession game with a made basket. Sims missed a jumper, but freshman guard Jabril Trawick skied for the rebound. As the 6-foot-5 Trawick battled with Crowder for post position, the senior hit the deck and the freshman stared in disbelief as the referees whistled him for an offensive foul. Marquette scored four quick points to restore their double-digit lead soon after and — though the Hoyas would cut the lead to single digits several times more — they never truly threatened again.

The game opened up a bit in the final minutes, but a few easy baskets couldn’t salvage Georgetown’s shooting numbers—the Blue and Gray finished the game just 5-of-18 from behind the arc and 14-of-25 from the line. In contrast, the Golden Eagles made nearly half of their shots from the field and 33 of a staggering 45 free-throw attempts.

The game was the Hoyas’ last regular-season contest. They will return to action Wednesday at 2 p.m. in Madison Square Garden to play a team to be determined in the second round of the Big East Tournament.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All The Hoya Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *