Dec. 21, 2012
WASHINGTON - The Georgetown University men's basketball team closes out its non-conference portion of the schedule on Saturday, Dec. 22, hosting local rival American at Verizon Center. Tipoff is slated for noon. The game will be shown live on MASN, with Jason Knapp and former Hoya great Mark Tillmon calling all of the action. The radio call of Rich Chvotkin, in his 39th season calling Georgetown men's basketball games, can be heard locally on ESPN 980 AM.
The Hoyas enter the game with a 9-1 overall record, the lone loss an 82-72 decision to then-No. 1 Indiana in the championship game of the Legends Classic. In the latest national rankings, GU is ranked No. 15 in the Associated Press Top 25 poll and No. 21 in the USA Today Top 25 Coaches' poll.
Georgetown has won its last six games, including the last three at Verizon Center, where they have a 7-0 record this season and have won 41-straight non-conference games. In the last two games, the Hoyas have scored at least 80 points, averaging 85.0 per game while shooting 51.7 percent from the floor (62-of-120).
Led by a career-high 25 points from sophomore forward Greg Whittington (Columbia, Md./ Oakland Mills), the Hoyas beat Western Carolina, 81-68, last Saturday. Whittington, who hit 8-of-12 shots from the floor and three three-pointers, added 11 rebounds for his third double-double of the season. Whittington is second on the team in scoring (12.5 ppg) and leads the team in rebounding, with 7.7 boards per game, which ranks seventh in the BIG EAST. Whittington is sixth in the BIG EAST in minutes played, averaging 35.5 per game.
Sophomore forward Otto Porter Jr. (Morley, Mo./ Scott County Central), who scored 12 points and had nine rebounds in last week's game against Western Carolina, leads the team in scoring (12.9 ppg) and is second in rebounding (7.1 rpg). He ranks seventh in the league in steals (2.22 spg), eighth in defensive rebounds (5.22 rpg), eighth in assist/turnover ratio (2.42), 10th in rebounds (7.1 rpg), 11th in blocked shots (1.56 bpg) and 14th in field goal percentage (51.1 percent).
Junior guard Markel Starks (Accokeek, Md./Georgetown Prep) has scored in double figures six times this season and is third on the team in scoring with 11.6 points per game. He ranks ninth in the BIG EAST in three-point field goal percentage, connecting on 41.9 percent of his shots.
Sophomore center Mikael Hopkins (Hyattsville, Md./ DeMatha) is fourth on the team in scoring with 8.3 points per game and fourth with 3.0 rebounds, while junior forward Nate Lubick (Southborough, Mass. / St. Mark's) is averaging 7.6 points, 4.7 rebounds and leads the team with 3.3 assists per game.
Georgetown's starters have combined to score 78.0 percent of the team's points this season (521 of 668), while 69.3 percent of the team's scoring has come from sophomores and freshmen (463 of 668).
While the team's starters have carried the load, the Georgetown bench has seen considerable action in the last two games and sophomore guard Jabril Trawick (Philadelphia, Pa./Abington Friends) scored a career-high 14 points in the win over Western Carolina last weekend. Junior center Moses Ayegba (Kano, Nigeria/Rockville Christian [Md.]) is averaging 3.5 points and 3.5 rebounds in the last two games, while freshman guard D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera (Indianapolis, Ind./Oak Hill) is averaging 5.0 points and 2.8 rebounds in the last four games and freshman forward Stephen Domingo (San Francisco, Calif./St. Ignatius) has contributed 5.0 points in his last three games.
The Hoyas have been led by a stingy defensive effort this season, holding opponents to under 60 points in seven of its 10 games. GU's opponents are averaging a paltry 55,4 points per game, which ranks second in the BIG EAST and 10th nationally. It is the lowest opponent scoring average in Head Coach John Thompson III's tenure at GU. The Hoyas have limited opponents to 38.5 percent shooting from the field, which is fifth in the conference.
The meeting with American on Saturday will be the 53rd all-time between the schools, with GU holding a 44-8 advantage in the head-to-head meetings. The Hoyas have won the last eight meetings between the schools.