Georgetown played its second season opener Sunday night against the mighty Dukes of Duquesne, barely scraping out a 61-55 victory in the first game of the Legends Classic. Now, a win is a win, but tonight's offensive performance was troublesome, to say the least. Those of us who wondered how Georgetown would replace Jason Clark, Henry Sims and Hollis Thompson will continue to wonder how they will be replaced.
Freshman sensation D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera was exceptional in the first half, going 5-5 for 14 points, including 4 three pointers, but slowed in the second half with an apparent knee injury and finished with 19 points. Mikael Hopkins scored a career high 15 points, but was sloppy with the ball, similar to the first half against Florida. No one else scored in double figures for the Hoyas, as the offense looked stagnant and without direction for most of the game.
Otto Porter, Georgetown's best player, was limited in six minutes of action after getting poked in the eye early in the first half. Markel Starks carried the Hoyas through the last 10 minutes of the game, but looked very shaky for the first 30 minutes. Nate Lubick looked impressive and confident, especially compared to last season. Lubick found Starks for a backdoor cut on the most important bucket of the game. Greg Whittington, who was Georgetown's rock and played the entire game, scored 8 points and grabbed a whopping 15 crucial rebounds, but really struggled to get in the flow of the offense, spending most of his time 25 feet from the basket.
All in, this was an extremely shaky performance against a Duquesne team that was ranked 16 OUT OF 16 IN THE ATLANTIC 10. Granted, it was the first game of the season and there is plenty of basketball to be played (hopefully with our best player), but DUQUESNE WAS RANKED 16 OUT OF 16 IN THE ATLANTIC 10. This game was within a possession with 30 seconds to go.
I'd rather not spend too much time evaluating this game, because frankly, it makes me want to light myself on fire. All I know is this team is eight days away from playing #13 UCLA in New York, and if they play like they did tonight, they should be praying for condensation on the court. Good news is it's really early and Georgetown still prevailed without Porter. Duquesne coach Jim Ferry summed up the night perfectly: "It was ugly, early basketball from two young teams."
Hoyas next take the court against the Liberty Flames on Wednesday.