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Friars Down Hoyas as Big East Standings Remain Chaotic

Jessie Govan’s 1,000th career point not enough for Georgetown as the Friars earn their eighth consecutive win over the Hoyas.

NCAA Basketball: Providence at Georgetown Amber Searls-USA TODAY Sports

The Big East standings are a mess, and the Providence Friars (18-11, 9-7 Big East) added to the chaos on Saturday afternoon, defeating the Georgetown Hoyas (15-12, 5-11 Big East), 74-69. Four Friars scored double-digit points, with Rodney Bullock’s 19 leading the way. Kyron Cartwright added 16 points and nine assists in 38 minutes. For the Hoyas, Jessie Govan scored his 1,000th career point en route to a 20-point, 11-rebound night, good for his fourteenth double-double of the season. Marcus Derrickson recorded 11 points and 15 rebounds.

Both teams struggled on the offensive end to start the game. Kalif Young kicked things off with a short jumper but was matched by Govan on the other end of the floor. Bullock found the score sheet quickly with a 3-pointer less than three minutes in, and Derrickson drilled a 3-pointer three minutes later to give Georgetown an early 10-9 edge. The Hoyas would extend the lead to as many as eight points after a 7-0 run, capped by a Jahvon Blair 3-pointer with 9:03 remaining, but the Friars responded with an 8-0 run of their own to tie the game at 23 apiece. Govan scored four points in response as the Hoyas maintained their lead for the remainder of the half. Georgetown outscored Providence by four to end the half and enjoyed a 40-35 lead to close the half.

The Hoyas shot 54 percent from the field in the half, including 50 percent from deep. Meanwhile, Providence managed to hit just 39 percent of its shots, but committed just one turnover to Georgetown’s five.

The tables turned entirely in the second half as the Friars turned a lackluster shooting effort into an offensive showcase. Bullock was perfect from everywhere on the floor in the half, hitting 3-of-3 field goals, 2-of-2 from deep, and 2-of-2 from the foul line. Cartwright added 12 in the half, including several perfectly-timed baskets to cut any Georgetown momentum. On the other end, Derrickson and Govan struggled, shooting just 2-of-8 and 1-of-7, respectively.

Jalen Lindsey opened the half with four quick points to erase the Georgetown lead, and Cartwright drilled a 3-pointer five minutes in to give Providence its first lead in over 20 minutes of game action. The Friars quickly extended the lead as the Hoyas went ice cold from the field, failing to record a field goal in five consecutive minutes. Providence capitalized on this drought by going on a 10-0 run to take a 51-46 lead with 12:53 remaining. Lindsey nailed a 3-pointer minutes later to give the Friars their largest lead of the game, 11 points, with eight minutes to play. Georgetown attempted to slow the Providence offense by implementing a fullcourt press. While the Friars only committed three turnovers in the half, the press slowed the game down, allowing Georgetown to close the gap. Derrickson converted on a layup from the post with 1:11 remaining to trim the lead to one point, but the Hoyas ran out of steam in the final minutes. Trailing by three with 37 seconds left, the Hoyas called timeout, but the following possession ended in a contested floater, which missed. Bullock hit two free throws with 12 seconds left to ice the game.

The win locks the Friars into a three-way tie for third in the conference with Butler (19-10, 9-7 Big East) and Seton Hall (20-9, 9-7 Big East). The Friars split their season series with the Bulldogs, but lost both games to the Pirates, meaning they will need some help to earn the three-seed. Providence will travel to No. 4 Xavier (25-4, 13-3 Big East) on Wednesday for its penultimate regular season game.

For Georgetown, the loss guarantees a Wednesday night game in the Big East Tournament, as the Hoyas cannot finish higher than seventh place. However, with St. John’s (14-15, 3-12 Big East) losing on Saturday, Georgetown cannot finish lower than ninth. The Hoyas will host Marquette (16-12, 7-9 Big East) on Monday night.