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DIVINE WHINE: Hoyas Frighten Friars in Cooley Return, 84-76

Surprising Providence, Georgetown took a 3 point lead with 3 minutes left

NCAA Basketball: Georgetown at Providence Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports

Your Georgetown Hoyas (8-12, 1-8 Big East) fought back against the Providence Friars (14-7, 5-4) enough to cause panic in the final 3 minutes, but ultimately came up short, 84-76. In the midst of an emotional day for coach Ed Cooley returning to his hometown and a chaotic day for Friars fans who fell over themselves while spewing vitriol, an exciting basketball game broke out.

While Georgetown and Big East leading scorer Jayden Epps started out slowly shooting from the floor, taking the lead 69-66 with under 3 minutes gave the proud people of Providence a taste of Ed Cooley’s Heart-attack Hoyas. Georgetown’s 13-4 offensive rebound margin led to 13 more field goal attempts (27-62 versus 28-49) and a 17-6 second-chance points margin.

While Providence had 10 second-half turnovers, Georgetown had 8, with a few tough ones down the stretch.

Fouls were the story of the game, with Supreme Cook fouling out and Dontrez Styles and Jay Heath playing in foul trouble almost since the tipoff. Epps finished with 26 points, including shooting 3-8 from three in the second half after an 0-5 first half from beyond the arc.

GUHoyas Press Release:

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Despite coming back from a 12-point, second-half deficit and taking the 69-66 lead, the Georgetown University men’s basketball team could not complete the comeback, falling 84-76 on the road at Providence on Saturday afternoon. With the setback, Georgetown sits at 8-12 on the season with a 1-8 mark in BIG EAST play while Providence improves to 14-7 overall with a 5-4 record in league action.

”It feels a little emotional being in this room - very emotional being in this room. That was a helluva BIG EAST game. That’s what our league is all about. You don’t look at records, you just look at how hard young men play. That was an elite, elite college basketball game … Our team has to learn how to win. Our team has to learn how to close out games. We have been in some close games and normally I think the staff, we do a really good job in close games. When you’re building and starting a different culture and identity - our players need to learn how to win. We’ve been in three or four BIG EAST games right down to the last two minutes and unfortunately we haven’t been able to close them out. I think it’s a big stepping stone for our men, I think it’s a trust thing, I think it’s a belief thing and hopefully this elevates us a little bit.” - Head Coach Ed Cooley


  • Jayden Epps led a trio of Hoyas in double figures tallying 26 points on nine made buckets and perfect 5-for-5 performance from the free throw line. He chipped in a squad-best six helpers to pace the offense.
  • Ismael Massoud came off the bench to score 16 points on a 5-for-10 effort from the floor, including four made 3-pointers. He grabbed a squad-best seven rebounds in the contest.
  • Supreme Cook tallied 15 points on a 7-for-10 shooting performance from the floor.
  • Georgetown shot 43.5% (27-62) for the game and knocked down nine 3-pointers while allowing PC 57.1% (28-49) shooting for the game.
  • The Hoyas narrowly outrebounded the Friars 31-29.
  • GU forced 16 turnovers on six steals but committed 15 of its own in the contest.

Trailing 7-4 early, a Cook layup sparked an 8-2 run for the Blue & Gray fueled by a trio of Epps free throws and capped by an Ismael Massoud3-pointer as the Hoyas pulled ahead 12-9.

  • With the Hoyas up 14-12, Providence tallied six unanswered to take the 18-14 advantage but the Hoyas would not go away as a Cook traditional three-point play pulled GU back within one.
  • Georgetown managed five unanswered behind an Epps layup and a Styles 3-pointer to take the 22-20 lead with 9:04 on the clock.
  • However, the Friars staged a 10-0 run and would lead by as many as nine (33-24) before back-to-back buckets from Drew Fielder and Epps made it a two-possession game with 3:10 in the first half. Massoud drained a deep 3-pointer to make it a one-possession game late but a PC bucket gave the Friars a 37-33 advantage going into the locker room.
  • The Hoyas put some pressure on the Friars coming out of the break, making it a one-possession game following a pair of buckets, but PC responded with six unanswered to take a 45-37 lead early in the second frame.
  • Providence led by as many as 12 midway through the second half, but the Hoyas reeled off seven unanswered sparked by a pair of free throws from Wayne Bristol Jr., and capped by a Jay Heath layup, to pull back within five (56-51, 10:14).
  • A Heath triple made it a one-possession game before a Brumbaugh layup tied the game up at 58-58 with 6:53 left in regulation. Both teams battled down the stretch but it was another Massoud 3-pointer that knotted the game once again, this time at 66 apiece (4:36).
  • An Epps 3-pointer gave the Hoyas its first lead of the frame, 69-66, but PC managed an 11-0 run over 1:34 to take a commanding 77-69 lead down the stretch. The Friars went on for the 84-76 win at the final whistle.

UP NEXT The Hoyas will return to action on Saturday, February 3 when they return to the District to host No. 14/16 Marquette. Tipoff at Capital One Arena is scheduled for 2 p.m. and the game will be broadcast on FS1 with Dave Sims calling the play-by-play and Tarik Turner providing analysis. The radio call of Rich Chvotkin, in his 50th season as the Voice of the Hoyas, can be heard locally on The Team 980 and nationally on the SiriusXM app.