Don’t look now, but the Hoyas have won 6 consecutive games heading into conference play.
After securing an impressive road victory against Syracuse last Saturday, the Georgetown Hoyas showed no signs of a let down against the University of North Carolina-Greensboro Spartans. The win serves as an important sign of maturity and focus for a Hoyas team that appears to be hitting its stride right before Big East play.
After a less than ideal start to the game (in large part because of poor rebounding), the Hoyas were able to clamp down defensively en route to a 78-56 victory. Let’s take a look at things that went well and others that didn’t.
Going into last night’s game, UNCG was shooting 40% from deep (a top-20 percentage in the nation) on 21 attempts per game. Against the Hoyas stingy defense, the team shot a meager 21% on only 14 attempts–a sign of the Hoyas following the scouting report to a T. Any time you can hold the opponent to 56 points on 30% shooting, it likely results in a win, and that was the case for the Hoyas.
-Jessie Govan continues his impressive play
20 points. 10 rebounds. 6 assists. 4 blocks. Enough said.
The sophomore big man has now scored in double figures in 3 straight games and has back-to-back double-doubles, giving the Hoyas a reliable 3rd (even 2nd) option on offense. Slowly but surely, he is coming into his own, after a less-than-stellar showing against top-level teams in Hawaii.
-Possible breakout game for Marcus Derrickson
The sophomore had his best shooting night of the season, pouring in 15 points on 5-7 shooting, including three 3-pointers. This was important for Derrickson, who has had a rough go early on, in part because of injuries and an altered role. He came into the game, shooting 28% and 27% from 2-point and 3-point range, respectively. However, players just need to see the ball go in the bucket once to get going, and that’s likely what happened for the sophomore.
UNCG was able to pull down 21–yes twenty-one–offensive rebounds. That is simply inexcusable. Yes, the Hoyas are not a great rebounding team, but giving up that many offensive boards against an inferior opponent is a bit worrisome. Some rebounds were just lucky bounces for the Spartans, but others included poor box outs and a lack of urgency. Second chance opportunities was what kept UNCG afloat early in the first half until the Hoyas were able to begin creating turnovers and forcing tough shots.
After the players return from Christmas break, the Hoyas will begin conference play, beginning with a tough road challenge against Marquette. Last season, the Hoyas finished with a sub-par 7-11 conference record, something they will undoubtedly look to improve this time around.