Nov. 14, 2012
WASHINGTON - Georgetown University sophomore forward Greg Whittington (Columbia, Md./Oakland Mills) scored a career-high 18 points to lead four players in double figures and the Hoyas beat Liberty, 68-59, in a regional round game of the Legends Classic at Verizon Center Wednesday night. Georgetown improves to 2-0 with the win, while the Flames fall to 0-3.
Whittington scored 18 points, grabbed a team-high nine rebounds and had four assists to lead the Hoyas, while junior forward Nate Lubick (Southborough, Mass./St. Marks) added 13 points and eight rebounds, sophomore center Mikael Hopkins (Hyattsville, Md./DeMatha) tied a career-high with 13 points, five rebounds, two assists, two blocks and three steals and freshman guard D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera (Indianapolis, Ind./Oak Hill) chipped in 11 points.
The Hoyas played without sophomore forward Otto Porter Jr. (Morley, Mo./Scott County Central), a Preseason Associated Press Honorable Mention All-American and Preseason All-BIG EAST First Team selection, who missed the game after being hit in the head during the team's season opener on Sunday against Duquesne.
Georgetown led by 16 points, 41-25, at the break and out-scored the Flame 14-7 over the opening seven minutes of the second half and took a 23-point lead on a three-pointer by Smith-Rivera with 13:00 left to play.
Eleven different players appeared in the lineup for the Hoyas, who led by 20 points, 65-45, on free throws from Whittington with 5:41 to play in the game. The lead was 15 points, 67-52, with 1:25 remaining on free throws from Lubick before Liberty scored seven of the final eight points to make it 68-59 on a three-point play from JR Coronado.
The Hoyas jumped out to a 16-point lead at the half, 41-25, thanks to 61.5 percent shooting from the floor, while forcing 11 Liberty turnovers and scoring 16 points off of them.
After Liberty took a 4-0 lead on jumpers from Tavares Speaks, the Hoyas scored 17-straight points, opening a 17-4 lead on a dunk from Lubick with 13:30 on the clock. Liberty hit its first basket in 5:58 when Chad Donley knocked in a three-pointer at 12:17, starting an 11-4 spurt over 5:43 as the lead shrank to six points, 21-15, on a three-pointer from Davon Marshall.
A jumper from Whittington followed by a conventional three-point play from Smith-Rivera pushed the lead back to double digits, 28-18. Georgetown out-scored Liberty 18-7 over the final 5:53 of the half.
Georgetown finished the game shooting 50.0 percent from the floor (24-of-48), hit 13.3 percent of its three-point field goals (2-of-15) and 69.2 percent of its free throws (18-of-26). GU held a 29-27 advantage on the boards, handed out 17 assists and committed nine turnovers, with five blocks and seven steals.
Georgetown travels to New York City, where the Hoyas will play in the championship rounds of the Legends Classic at the brand-new Barclay's Center in Brooklyn. The team opens the championship round on Monday, Nov. 19 against UCLA (8 p.m., ESPN2). GU would then play either Georgia or Indiana on Tuesday, Nov. 20 (7:30 or 10 p.m.).