Still ranked at 17, Villanova is coming off a 19-point collapse to St. John’s at Madison Square Garden. Despite following a recently successful recipe where Phil Booth and Eric Paschall lead the attack, Villanova only made 5 of 24 field goals in the second half (3-15 3PFG). With VU holding Shamorie Ponds to 11 points on 2-for-14 shooting from the field and 0-4 from 3-point range, the game came down to free throws down the stretch, and St. John’s capitalized at home.
Earlier in the week Villanova had beaten Providence at home in a physical battle and lost to Marquette on the road, in two close games. Jay Wright’s squad looks vulnerable right now, especially if the upperclassmen can be held in check. Expect a lot of whistles on Wednesday.
Here are are the links:
Villanova has lost two of three, coming one possession short of winning at Marquette and, eight days later, losing a 19-point lead and being overwhelmed by St. John’s at sold-out Madison Square Garden, a building where the Wildcats had defeated the Red Storm 12 consecutive times. The sky isn’t falling for the Cats (20-6, 11-2 Big East) but they did start a stretch of three straight road games on a negative note. They play the talented young Hoyas at Georgetown on Wednesday night...
“[St. John’s] really stepped it up defensively, pressed us a little bit and we turned the ball over a couple of times,” Wright said. “They got out in transition and that really got them going. It really seemed to spark their halfcourt defense. Their halfcourt defense then went to another level. After they pressed us, the crowd got going and the environment got heated.”
This week in Nova hoops, with KenPom predictions:— Rollie 2 Wright (@Rollie2Wright) February 18, 2019
- Wednesday, at Georgetown: W, 78-73
- Sunday, at Xavier: W, 71-66
Marquette and Villanova are now projected to share the Big East regular season title at 14-4.
- Marquette has Butler at home & Providence on the road this week.
What do the Hoyas need to do to change the outcome on Wednesday night?
Tough defense inside. When the teams last met, Villanova missed only four shots inside of ten feet. Blocking and altering shots down low will be a big key for Georgetown in this game, and that may be tough to do as they try to keep Govan out of foul trouble.
Keep Govan out of foul trouble. Govan averages 31 minutes and 18 points a game. That is a far cry from the 13 and 0 he put up in the last game. Jessie shoots 50% from the field on the season, but was 0-9 in that game. They need a big game from the Senior to pull off the upset...
On tonight’s episode of “Center Court with Patrick Ewing”, @CoachEwing33 welcomes fellow Hall of Famer @IsiahThomas to the show! New episodes air on @siriusXM every Tuesday from 7-8 pm on @SXMCollege ESPNU Channel 84 #HoyaSaxahttps://t.co/TvPIsS2Sad— Georgetown Hoops (@GeorgetownHoops) February 19, 2019
Outside of Gillespie’s star turn, the Hoyas and Wildcats were relatively even across the board statistically in Villanova’s 12-point victory [on February 3rd].
The one area of the game where that wasn’t the case: foul shots.
Villanova made more free throws (20) than Georgetown even attempted (18). In a 12-point game, the nine-point advantage the Wildcats had at the charity stripe made a world of difference.
"Where's Louie?" A missing Carnesecca, throwing a game of Wolf, and arguing over $2500. Want rivalries? Go inside the old Big East meetings. https://t.co/Kd8DWXBfJF— Dana O'Neil (@DanaONeilWriter) February 19, 2019
After shooting just 7-13 from the foul line in the opening half, St. John’s made 18-20 from the charity stripe in the second half, including a perfect 10-10 in the game’s final minute to help seal the game. For the ‘Cats, Paschall and Phil Booth each shot just 2-11 from the field, and committed eight turnovers between them. Graduate transfer, Joe Cremo, was one of the few bright spots for ‘Nova, as he knocked down four three-pointers and recorded a season-high 14 points.
KenPom: Nova is 22nd overall, 11th in Adj. Offense, and 75th in Adj. Defense...
NET: Nova is 20th overall, previously 19th
Phil Booth, Eric Paschall, Collin Gillespie, Saddiq Bey and Joe Cremo all shoot between 37.5 and 38.9 percent and average a combined 9.6 makes per game. The only member of the primary nine-man rotation who doesn’t average at least four three-point attempts per 40 minutes is Dhamir Cosby-Roundtree, who handles all the dirty work in the paint.
That isn’t all Villanova excels at, though. For such a perimeter-oriented offense, the Wildcats are surprisingly good at getting to the free-throw line. They also rank in the top 100 nationally in offensive rebound percentage, turnover percentage and two-point percentage.
BIG EAST Freshman of the Week Saddiq Bey, Villanova, F, Fr. – Bey registered 11 points and five rebounds in a 71-65 defeat to St. John’s at Madison Square Garden. Earlier in the week, the freshman contributed six points and six rebounds in an 85-67 victory over Providence. Bey was named to the BIG EAST Honor Roll last week.
NB: That’s all it took?
Freshman forward Saddiq Bey returns to the DMV as a key member of the Villanova rotation. On Monday the Largo, Md., natve was tabbed as the BIG EAST Freshman of the Week for the first time this season. Last week the 6-8 forward was on the BIG EAST Honor Roll. The product of Sidwell Friends School - also the alma mater of former VU All-American Josh Hart - has started 19 games this season and averages 8.3 points and 5.1 rebounds per outing.
Let It Snow: Remembering #2 Villanova at #7 Georgetown, 2010.https://t.co/EoyekVvK8E— HoyaSaxa.com (@hoyatalk) February 19, 2019
On a day when both Phil Booth and Eric Paschall struggled to score, Joe Cremo and Saddiq Bey stepped up to take carry some of that load. Cremo scored 14 points, his most productive day as a Wildcat...
Gillespie continues to struggle with his shot. The 6-3 sophomore guard was 1-for-8 overall and 1-for-7 from 3-point range. He finished with four points. Gillespie is shooting 15.4 percent overall (4-for-26) and .052 percent (1-for-19) from deep in the last three games and has scored just 11 points in the last three games. He had 43 points in the two games before that including a career-high 30 in the win over Georgetown.
While the officials play a vital role in balancing any basketball game, they always strive not to be noticed very much. The crew that worked Wednesday’s Big East game failed on that front. After a barrage of calls went against the Friars in the first half, a torrent of whistles sent Villanova back on its heels in the second. The seesaw fouls titled the balance of the game on several occasions and drew a stiff reaction from both sides. In the end, a late spurt by the Wildcats wiped out any aggrieved feelings PC could have had in a 85-67 defeat.
Marquette triumphs over Villanova, 66-65 https://t.co/WUap4wc3Ss— Big East Coast Bias (@becb_sbn) February 10, 2019
”Rebounding is one of the things we have to work on,” stated Wright in the aftermath of Wednesday night’s win over the Friars. Providence owned a 36-29 edge over the Wildcats on the glass. “We’ve got to be tough on the boards... When Providence played St. John’s, it was so physical the refs couldn’t call everything. We’ve got to be ready for that going into their place.”
...the Wildcats were greatly aided by the efforts of sophomore forward Dhamir Cosby-Roundtree... “I’m really happy with Dhamir,” noted Wright. “We’re hard on him but he’s only a sophomore. We expect so much out of him because he is one of the few guys who was even here last year, even though he didn’t get significant minutes...”
Listed at 6-1, 175 pounds, Ponds has taken over games this year. That is due, at least in part, to his energy, which Mullin has cultivated. “When you have the smaller guards – whether it be 6-feet, 6-2, 6-1 or under – they’re the most energetic, and they set the pace, whether it be shoot-around, practice, and in the game,” Mullin said. “They play with the most energy, and that’s something I’ve been stressing to Shamorie. He’s done a much better job this year with his pace and playing sharp, and he’ll continue to do that.”
|23||2019-02-06||Creighton||W (1 OT)||66||59||.375||10||34||.294||14||22||11||31||6||12||24||53||.453||5||17||.294||6||9||6||29||11||21|
|26||2019-02-17||N||St. John's (NY)||L||65||71||.333||11||35||.314||18||24||10||42||16||23||19||56||.339||8||23||.348||25||33||8||35||7||19|
While it doesn’t happen often, this wasn’t the first time that Booth and Paschall were guilty of poor decision making. Instead of moving the ball around the offense or using their drive ability to kick to open shooters, they settled for contested threes and tried to force their way to the bucket...
From the time St. John’s took their first lead of the game (7:28) until Ponds stretched the lead to six with under a minute to go (0:50), Booth and Paschall got the ball for every possession Villanova had. No one else even attempted a shot. The result was 1 of 6 from the field (16.6%), including 0 for 5 from beyond the arc, 4 of 7 on free throw attempts, and three turnovers.
“(In everything I do) To how I drive racecars, how I treat the guys in the team how I want them to treat me, how I expect people to be—I use John Thompson wisdom everyday of my life and I will use it to the day I am gone,” Gaughan said of his former coach."— Philadelphia Hoyas (@PhillyHoyas) February 18, 2019