March 5, 2013
WASHINGTON - Georgetown University's fifth-ranked men's basketball team plays its final BIG EAST road contest this Wednesday, March 6 against Villanova University. The game will be played in Philadelphia, Pa. at the Wells Fargo Center and tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m.
The game will be shown live on ESPN2 with Mike Patrick and LaPhonso Ellis calling the contest. Locally fans can tune into Sports Talk AM 570 to hear Rich Cvotkin cover all of the action.
The Hoyas carry a season high ranking of No. 5 in both the latest Associated Press and USA Today Coaches polls into the affair. Georgetown boasts a 23-4 overall record along with a 13-3 mark in BIG EAST play. The Hoyas are riding an 11-game win streak and have built a 6-2 road record.
Villanova has dropped its past two games, falling at Seton Hall and at Pittsburgh. The Wildcats are 18-12 overall and 9-8 in league play. Georgetown will be the third top five ranked opponent Villanova has faced in the Wells Fargo Center. The Wildcats pulled off upsets in the two previous games when they defeated Louisville and Syracuse in late January.
Wednesday's game will be the 71st meeting all-time between the programs dating back to the 1921-22 season. Georgetown owns a 42-28 advantage in the series. The Blue and Gray have won three straight over the Wildcats and have won eight of the last nine meetings, including last year's 67-46 victory in Washington.
Georgetown sits alone atop of the BIG EAST Conference with a 13-3 record. The Hoyas notched their 13th conference win when they defeated Rutgers 64-51 this past Saturday night. Holding a one-point advantage at halftime, 29-28, Georgetown outscored the Scarlet Knights 35-23 in the second half to close out the game. Sophomore forward Otto Porter Jr. (Morley, Mo./ Scott County Central) scored a game high 28 points, shooting over 50% from the field and sinking 15-of-18 from the charity stripe, the most free throws made and attempted by a Hoya since 2003. The Hoyas limited Rutgers to 37% shooting and outrebounded RU 35 to 27.
Porter Jr. continues to impress as he was named the BIG EAST Player of the Week for the third consecutive week on Monday. It is the first time a player has won the award three-straight weeks since the 2002-03 season when Boston College's Troy Bell achieved the feat. Porter Jr. leads the Hoyas in scoring and rebounding, averaging 16.6 points and 7.6 rebounds. He also ranks second on the squad in field goal percentage (51.0%) and is the leader in three point percentage (46.9%). In league games Porter Jr. is first in the conference for three point percentage (48.3%), second in scoring with 18.7 points and sixth in rebounds with 7.5.
The Hoya defense has held opponents to 37.6% shooting from the field, which ranks eighth nationally. The Hoyas are 10th nationally in scoring defense, limiting the opponent to 56.3 points a game. Georgetown has forced 381 turnovers and recorded 109 blocks. Three players have over 20 blocks with Mikael Hopkins (Hyattsville, Md./DeMatha) leading the way with 31. Porter Jr. is second with 25 blocks and Nate Lubick (Southborough, Mass./St. Marks) third with 22.
Lubick has been consistent all year and currently is the BIG EAST leader in shooting percentage (84-of-140, 60.0%). He has started all 27 contest and his 5.4 rebounds per game is second on the team while his 7.7 scoring average is fifth. Hopkins has also been a starter in every game and owns a 6.0 scoring average and corrals on average 2.6 rebounds.
Starting guards Markel Starks (Accokeek, Md./Georgetown Prep) and Jabril Trawick (Philadelphia, Pa./Abington Friends) along with freshman D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera (Indianapolis, Ind./Oak Hill), have solidified the Hoya backcourt. Starks is scoring 12.2 points a game which is second on the team. His 47 three point makes lead the team. Smith-Rivera is fourth on the team in scoring with 8.6 per affair and his 32 treys ranks third. Trawick averages over 25 minutes a game and records 5.4 points a game. He is third on the squad in steals with 27.
Georgetown closes the 2012-13 regular season with a home game against Syracuse on Saturday, March 9 at Verizon Center. ESPN College Gameday will be recording live from Verizon Center prior to the noon start.