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RUNG OUT A HOYA: Marquette Massacres Georgetown, 95-73

Up 36-34 at the half, the Hoyas allow 61 second-half points

NCAA Basketball: Georgetown at Marquette Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

How long has it been since the Georgetown Hoyas won a BIG EAST game? It is better not to think about it, but you can check Twitter if you must. How long will it be until fans see a meaningful change in how Georgetown’s basketball program is run? It is probably healthier not to think about that for too long, either.

Even our opponents’ fanbases are getting engaged in sign-making campaigns in the hope that someday it will stop dragging down their schools’ NET simply because they are forced to schedule games against the Hoyas. Today did nothing to improve that perception or ranking, as Georgetown lost to the Marquette Golden Eagles by a score of 95-73.

With Jay Heath recovering from surgery to repair a broken finger, Brandon Murray sidelined with shoulder/upper body injury, Bryson Mozone named as a game-time decision (who did not play), and the availability of Wayne Bristol Jr. uncertain until game-time, it is entirely fair if you found yourself spending a few pregame minutes wondering whether the Hoyas have anybody else they could promote from manager to the active roster to fill out their bench. Marquette had won three straight, including road games at Nova and St. John’s. We all know how things have gone for Georgetown, and the 18.5 point line on the game reflected this reality.

Jordan Riley got his first start, as well as the first two baskets for the Hoyas, as both teams scored on their respective opening possessions. (Understandably accustomed to scoring droughts on the part of Georgetown, FS2’s scorebug showed us as having no points for the first 2.5 minutes of play.) Solid defense from Bristol allowed the Hoyas to get out in transition, opening up the alley-oop opportunity that Primo Spears and Akok Akok were able to capitalize on. Oso Ighodaro had a couple of early baskets for the Golden Eagles, but a three from Bristol kept Georgetown within 1.

After Wahab made a free throw to tie it up, the announcing crew remarked that he must really enjoy playing in the state of Maryland, referencing his transfer to College Park and demonstrating blissful ignorance regarding the location of both our campus and arena. Another triple from Bristol and a layup from Wahab, counterbalanced by a pair of layups from Chase Ross and David Joplin at the other end, and the Hoyas had their first lead, 15-14 at 13:41. A good defensive rebound and outlet pass by Bradley Ezewiro set Primo Spears up for a spinning layup, putting Georgetown ahead 21-14 and capping off a 9-0 run.

Unfortunately, they immediately gave up a steal and pair of layups, forcing the coaching staff to call timeout to try to get things under control before they went further awry.

It seems that the TO was more useful to Marquette, who got their first basket from beyond the arc on their next possession as someone (potentially Bass?), soared past Tyler Kolek’s shot-fake and left the aforementioned shooter wide open in the corner. Ezewiro fought through contact for the layup on the next possession, and Bristol added a jumper of his own.

With a clean block from Akok and Anglin returning possession through a tie-up, the Hoyas had a 25-51 lead at the U8.

The most spectacular play of the first half may have been Riley hustling to get back on defense and executing a soaring block over Sean Jones.

The Hoyas couldn’t hang onto the momentum or the ball for long, as Wahab missed a pair of foul shots then allowed a steal which the Golden Eagles parlayed into a Kam Jones triple. Riley made up for it and then some, completing a four-point play at the other end on the next possession to put Georgetown ahead 32-28 with 4:14 to play in the opening half. Within the next minute of play, Marquette was able to erase that 4-point advantage.

A buzzer-beating jumper from Spears with his feet on the arc was the difference in the first half, sending the Hoyas into the break with a 36-34 lead.

While Georgetown did a passable job of getting to the line early by drawing contact, their conversion rate at the free-throw line continued to be problematic, and the turnover woes continued with 8 in the first half alone.

It would have been wishful thinking to believe that the 2/14 outside shooting performance by Marquette in the first half would carry over, and they began rapidly reverting to their mean early in the second, nailing three consecutive triples. Bristol and Riley continued adding to their scoring totals with a basket apiece, but Georgetown still trailed by 5 by the U16 media break.

Despite a messy sequence featuring forced turnovers, mishandled passes, and blown defensive assignments, a three from Akok and jumper from Spears at the 8:47 mark temporarily staved off collapse, keeping it a two possession game.

You saw the part where it said “temporarily,” right? The deeply dreaded double-digit deficit death knell sounded soon after. A lengthy scoring drought for the Hoyas – facilitated by Tyler Kolek’s continued vicious dissection of both our offense & defense – was paired with a 14-0 run for the Golden Eagles.

With 7:32 left to play, Marquette had a 75-57 lead.

At the next break, the margin had expanded to 85-61.

At the final buzzer, it was 95-73. Nothing particularly positive of note from the Georgetown perspective occurred during those intervals that needs to be chronicled here.

Over the course of the game, Spears continued to lead this team with 18 points and 7 assists. Riley and Bristol gave credence to those who speculated that they should have been getting more playing time earlier in the season, adding 16 points apiece. The Hoyas also gave up 20 turnovers and went 12/21 from the stripe. Marquette scored 91 points in the second half. It would be less demoralizing if it appeared that any of the glaringly apparent deficiencies were being addressed.

Next up for the Hoyas, they head home and will host Seton Hall on Tuesday evening for an 8:30pm tipoff, set to air on FS1.