Marquette led by one with 35 seconds to go when Gardner missed a shot in the paint. Markel Starks then missed a layup, and after Juan Anderson made one of two free throws, Georgetown had a chance to tie or win with 10.8 seconds remaining. D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera was able to get to the rim, but he missed the layup and the Hoyas (16-12, 7-9 Big East) lost a key game down the stretch.
The story of the game was transfer guard Jake Thomas as the senior picked a great night to have his best game of the season. Thomas made 7 of 12 shots from the field, including 6-9 from three-point-range and has started to provide the outside shooting Marquette has been looking for all year long.
And as always, Gardner dominated in the paint. It helped that two of Georgetown’s big men, Moses Ayegba and Nate Lubick, both fouled out before the 10-minute-mark in the second half. Gardner was 8-10 from the field and made 10 free throws.
Georgetown was once again led by their three guards as Smith-Rivera, Starks and Jabril Trawick accounted for 59 of the Hoyas’ 73 points. Not one other Georgetown player scored more than six on the night.
However, the Hoyas only shot 7-26 in the second half from the field and ended up only shooting 39.2 percent from the field for the contest.
With the loss, Georgetown has now lost three of its last four games as its NCAA Tournament hopes took a big hit.
But for the Golden Eagles, they move one step closer to snatching a possible at-large bid, and get another opportunity on Sunday at No. 8 Villanova.
Marquette will need a similar performance from Jake Thomas to give Gardner space down low if it wants to be able to stay with the high powered Wildcat offense in Philadelphia.