Big games come at different stages of the calendar. For Georgetown, Thursday night’s 82-66 win would fall into the “big win” category.
Coach Patrick Ewing got big games out of Mac McClung (19 points) and Jamorko Pickett (15 points) as four players scored in double digits. The Hoyas were also able to survive Omer Yurtseven’s foul trouble. The senior would foul out with 5:28 left.
Down 52-50, Georgetown would go on a 12-0 run to go up 10. Just as impressive as that run was, the Hoyas refused to let Texas back in the game. The Longhorns never got closer than eight points as the Hoyas would eventually push the lead to 18.
The Hoyas play didn’t resemble what most had seen early on. For starters, Ewing shortened his bench tonight. Nine players played and the minutes weren’t as evenly distributed especially in the second half. Georgetown looked like a team with more continuity because of that even with Yurtseven on the bench. In the “number don’t tell the entire story” category, Wahab’s contribution seems much bigger than nine points and three rebounds. His defense clogged up the middle and he made several hustle plays that didn’t show up in the stat sheet. His 21 minutes were huge especially when you consider Yurtseven only played 12:27 and fouled out with 5:28 left.
The Hoyas were as aggressive as they’ve been all season against Texas’ half court defense. Jamorko Pickett showed flashes that made him so solid in freshman year. He was able to drive the ball to the basket and finish without having a guard dig it out. Same went for Mosely and McClung. The constant pressure the led the Hoyas to the free throw line. Georgetown would go 21-28 from the charity stripe. Some of it was at the end but most was due to the pressure the Hoyas offense put on Texas’ defense.
Georgetown’s defense has struggled mightily all season including tonight’s first half. In the first 20 minutes, the Longhorns shot 50% from the floor including 8-18 from the three point line. The second half Georgetown did a much better job on penetration. That would cut down on the open looks. Perhaps the key was how Georgetown limited Courtney Ramey in the second half. Ramey was a big factor along with Matt Coleman III, in the first half. But that changed in the second half where Ramey would go 0-3 with no assists. That’s after scoring five points in the first half along with five assists. Coleman III would score 12 of his 22 points in the second half but the Hoyas kept him from making his teammates better.
As a team, the Hoyas did a very good job limiting their turnovers. The Hoyas would only commit 11 turnovers against Texas’ pressure. Georgetown’s defense was able to turn Texas over 12 times. Those 12 turnovers led to 18 Georgetown points. Texas was only able to score nine points off turnovers.
Up next for the Hoyas, number one ranked Duke.
“I knew I could score like this, have an offensive game like this every game, but today I took it personally and I knew I just had to start off the game strong, come with a lot of fire in order for us to win.” – Jamorko Pickett
“I thought today we took a step forward because it wasn’t just individuals, we were more of a team tonight than we had been in the past” – Patrick Ewing
“It’s always great to come back (Madison Square Garden). This is my home” – Patrick Ewing