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

Men’s Basketball | Hoyas Crush Creighton, 67-40

FILE PHOTO: JULIA HENNRIKUS/THE HOYA Junior guard D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera scored a game-high 24 points on 9-of-17 shooting against Creighton on Saturday.

With 10:08 to play in the first half, Creighton senior guard Devin Brooks’ layup gave the Blue Jays a 15-12 lead in front of a raucous sellout crowd of 17,499 in Omaha, Neb. Although the crowd celebrated its early success against the No. 21 team in the nation, the shot was Creighton’s last field goal for the rest of the half — in the seventeen minutes that followed Brooks’ layup, Georgetown’s defense did not allow a single Creighton field goal, as Georgetown took the lead with a 31-3 run.

Georgetown was led by the experienced backcourt tandem of junior D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera and senior Jabril Trawick. The two guards and their outside shooting silenced any hopes the Big East bottom dwellers had of an upset, as Georgetown (15-6, 7-3 Big East) avoided a crisis with a 67-40 victory over Creighton (10-13, 1-9 Big East).

“[The Bluejays] were struggling to score, but they can score. They can go on runs, particularly in this building,” Head Coach John Thompson III said. “We stay focused, stay attentive and try not to let them get open looks. Then we have to rebound.”

Smith-Rivera finished with 24 points on 9-of-17 shooting, while Trawick added a season-high 15 points and was 3-of-5 from beyond the arc. Comparatively, Creighton finished the game with only 11 field goals, and the Bluejays missed 24 consecutive shots between Brooks’ layup and a three-pointer from senior guard Avery Dingman with less than 13 minutes left in the second half.

In spite of this immensely successful result for Georgetown, the Hoyas, too, had some weak spots in their performance. With six minutes remaining in regulation, senior center Joshua Smith exited the game with his fifth foul and a season-low two points, which came in the form of a thunderous slam over two defenders.

However, even without their big man for all but 14 minutes of the game, Georgetown’s athleticism overwhelmed Creighton, and the Hoyas dominated the game with defensive pressure and rebounding.

“It wasn’t that they took shots out of the norm,” Smith-Rivera said. “Today, they got quite a few shots they usually knock down that they didn’t make. I think we defended well, so it kind of frustrated them a little.”

Omaha native, recent Louisville transfer and sophomore forward Akoy Agau was looking on from the bench as thirteen Hoyas entered the game, many of them performing superbly. Senior forward Mikael Hopkins and freshman forward Isaac Copeland combined for 16 points and 15 rebounds and proved to be more than capable of controlling the paint in Smith’s absence. The Hoyas shot 50 percent from the field and turned the ball over ten times, while Creighton shot a season-low 20.8 percent for the game.

“Simply put, that’s embarrassing,” Creighton Head Coach Greg McDermott said. “It was a battle of toughness, and we certainly weren’t up to the challenge.

The blowout win over Creighton followed a midweek collapse at home, where the Hoyas fell to Xavier, 66-53, for the second time this season. Georgetown shot 39 percent, turned the ball over a season-high 17 times and scored a season-low 53 against Xavier, but responded to the loss nicely on their furthest Big East road trip.

With a win over Creighton under its belt, Georgetown will try to avenge a Big East loss from earlier in the season — a feat it was unable to accomplish against Xavier — when the team plays host to Providence on Wednesday at 9 p.m. at Verizon Center. The Hoyas, who will most likely fall from the top 25 come Monday, fell 60-57 in overtime to Providence on Jan. 10.


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