Newsflash time - this freshman class is special. Not sure if you folks knew that. Otto Porter scored the last 6 points for Georgetown, as the Hoyas narrowly escaped Rutgers 52-50 after being down 4 points with less than 2 minutes to play. The Hoyas played Porter and fellow freshmen Jabril Trawick and Greg Whittington for the majority of the second half, with the young fellas leading us to victory. Porter was the late game hero, but Whittington's 7 straight points after Rutgers went up 38-31 singlehandedly saved the game. Trawick was unbelievable on defense, spending his time guarding 5'9" Myles Mack and completely taking him out of the game.
The freshmen got help from seniors Henry Sims and Jason Clark as well. Sims had his first double double of the year, scoring 12 points and grabbing 12 rebounds. Clark played excellent defense on Eli Carter throughout the game and added 11 points, 8 of which came from the free throw line.
More recap after Le Jump.
No one will ever say this was a pretty game. The Hoyas shot 29% from the field and 21% from the three point line. Sims, Clark, and Hollis Thompson combined for 4 field goals, and Georgetown's starters had a combined 6 field goals. Part of this statistic was poor shooting, but another part of it was by design. Mike Rice and Rutgers wanted to ugly this game up, evidenced by 29 personal fouls and Georgetown's 36 free throw attempts. It was clear that Rice knew his young squad couldn't outscore Georgetown, but he definitely thought he could outslug them. He saw Georgetown's free throw percentage the last few games and thought his team could outlast the Hoyas in a brutally ugly game. I'm sure Rice will find a way to complain about the refereeing in his post game remarks, but he only has himself to blame. Each of those 29 fouls were legitimate. Rice took a gamble and it almost paid off. Rutgers is a team no one in the Big East will want to see the rest of the year and in years ahead, no doubt about that.
But today, the Hoyas won a type of game that many in the media didn't believe they could. SI's Seth Davis wrote earlier in the season that many couldn't see Georgetown winning an ugly game, and that the Hoyas have to shoot well to win games. In 2010-2011? Absolutely. But this year's team has won ugly, and has won ugly often. And trust me, there was no uglier game than today. The Hoyas made THREE field goals in the first half. Yet, here we are, sitting at 16-3 overall, 6-2 in the Big East and top 10 in the country in a year that we were predicted to finish 10th in the conference.
With the news out of Syracuse that Mookie Jones is done for the year and Fab Melo has academic issues forcing him out of today's game against Notre Dame and Monday's game against Cincinnati at a minimum, the Big East got a whole lot more interesting. For the Hoyas, the next week should be focused on getting Hollis Thompson and Markel Starks back on track before heading to Pittsburgh next Saturday. Nate Lubick played another nice game, grabbing crucial offensive rebounds and playing stellar defense.
Thankfully, even in a game in which we shot the ball so poorly, this year's Georgetown team has enough pieces to grab a victory from what looked to be certain defeat. Onto the next one, a win is a win, and any other sports cliche you can think of.
Hoya Saxa, Pittsburgh is next.