The perplexing question of “Is Georgetown a quality team?” continues to have no answer. After losing to Maryland and Arkansas State, the Hoyas upset #13 Oregon to open the Maui Invitational Monday afternoon. Tuesday, after hanging with #15 Wisconsin for about 30 minutes, the Badgers proved too tough en route to a 16-point victory.
The Hoyas entered the half only down three points, but a 21-10 run pushed the Wisconsin lead to double digits. Georgetown was awful on the glass, accumulating fewer defensive rebounds than Wisconsin did offensive (20-19).
Scoring wise, L.J. Peak and Rodney Pryor were the only threats for Georgetown. Their combined 32 points were more than half of the team’s total. Bradley Hayes returned from suspension to score six points and grab eight rebounds.
Here is what we learned tonight:
L.J. Peak and Rodney Pryor are Georgetown’s best players
For as poorly as Georgetown played Tuesday, those two stood out on stat sheet. They amassed 11 of the team’s 18 field goals, all five Hoya three pointers, and proved to be the only sources of offense. Perhaps it was the Badgers’ suffocating defense, but no one else stepped up to match their effort. Pryor was electric in the first half, continuing his performance from the game against Oregon; 11 of his 14 points came in the first 20 minutes Although, much like the Maryland and Arkansas state game, once Pryor goes cold, so do the Hoyas. While he struggled to score, Peak picked up his game.
The junior from South Carolina was Georgetown’s only scoring outlet in the second half. He scored 10 of the Hoyas’ 28 points post-break (over half of his 18 in total). His contested three-point jumpers were the only things that kept Georgetown from completely being blown out. For the rest of the season, these two need to continue to play well for the Hoyas to thrive.
Georgetown needs more defensive rebounders
Plainly stated, Georgetown was demolished on the glass. They had a -29 rebounding margin and allowed 20 offensive boards. Jessie Govan did not record a single rebound as he was in foul trouble for much of the game. The Hoyas recorded one single offensive rebound. Ethan Happ and Nigel Hayes consistently walked into the lane to consume missed Badger shots, everyone proved unable to box out, and the Hoyas could not get off the defensive end of the court. If Georgetown ever wants to win consistently, they need to fix this problem immediately.
The Hoyas gave up
With about four minutes remaining, ESPN color broadcaster, Jay Bilas, said, “They [Georgetown] have waved the white flag.”
After Wisconsin began to play better basketball at the beginning of the second half, Georgetown had no response. They allowed Wisconsin to take any offensive rebound, shoot anywhere from the floor, and play exactly the way they wished. Badger forwards walked into the lane off free throws and grabbed offensive rebounds. Bradley Hayes, in his first game of the season, was never able to find Happ after missed shots, as he grabbed eight offensive and seven defensive rebounds.
On the offensive end, the Hoyas retorted back to simply taking quick and contested shots. Since Hayes was being tightly guarded and Pryor was off his game in the second half, L.J Peak was called upon for production. While he was able to continue to score points, keeping Georgetown within 15 for most of the second half, his 18 points were nowhere near enough. If this is a sign for the level of the efforts they will bring for the rest of the season, then John Thompson III may be out of a job next summer.