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Friars hang on to beat Georgetown 73-69

Providence closed the game on a 9-0 run to improve to 7-4 in the conference.

NCAA Basketball: Georgetown at Providence Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

First Half

Both teams started off relatively cold, combining 3-10 to open the night. Georgetown then took advantage of a three-minute Providence scoring drought with a quick 6-0 run.

Jessie Govan was doing his best Patrick Ewing impersonation early on, as he scored 12 of the Hoyas’ first 13 points on 5/6 shooting. Georgetown was abusing the Friars interior defense, or lack there. They dominated the paint and glass over the first ten minutes, making the Friars look lost on the defensive end.

Blame it on the late start all you want, but both teams were sluggish out of the gate. They combined for 9 turnovers in the game’s first 8 minutes. Providence had more turnovers (4) than rebounds (3) ten minutes in. Both teams were also in the bonus just before the frame’s halfway point.

The Friars then switched to a zone and Georgetown responded by hitting 7 of their next 7, including two threes to put them up 30-20. Then Providence dug in on the defensive end.

Georgetown went 5+ minutes without a field goal while slipping into a 4 minute scoreless span, which allowed Providence to go on a 9-0 run that awoke the home crowd. The Friars took the lead in the final minute 40-39, but Jessie Govan hit a “silencer” at the buzzer to give Georgetown a 42-40 lead heading into halftime.

The Hoyas out-rebounded Providence 20-14 in the first half, but the Friars battled back to win the fight in the paint 20-16.

Govan led all scorers in the first frame with 19 points (8/10 FG) in 18 minutes.

Also of note: Rodney Bullock had zero points on 0/1 shooting. Not ideal.

Second Half

The beginning of the second half was very similar to the first; flat. Providence started with just one field goal over the first four minutes, while Georgetown began 0-4 from the charity stripe. Somehow this equaled a 6-0 Friars run, bizarre as it was.

It was a back-and-forth, physical contest from here on out. As Kevin McNamara of the Providence Journal put it, “More off-ball contact in a game than I’ve seen this year”. It had all the feels of an old school Big East tilt.

The Hoyas did a good job of slowing the pace, but Providence still managed to get some pretty good looks near the midway point of the half, but couldn’t get them to fall, causing another two-plus minute scoring drought. Lucky for them, the Hoyas answered with a drought of their own. We had a rock fight on our hands.

Georgetown went on a 6-0 Govan-led run with just over four minutes remaining. The Hoyas offense was continuing to run through him, and there wasn’t much Providence could do about it. They also took advantage of the absence of Jalen Lindsey, who exited the game to get bandaged for a cut lip. He would reenter with 3:21 left.

It looked like free throws would ultimately kill the Friars down the stretch, as they struggled from the line, but Providence woke up just in time. They finished the final 1:17 on a 9-0 run, starting with a three by Isaiah Jackson, and continued with free throws by Alpha Diallo, Kyron Cartwright, and Jalen Lindsay, while the Hoyas went 0 for their last 6.

The game was tied 69-69 with 6 seconds left, when Kyron Cartwright stole a defensive rebound away from Jessie Govan, leading to a foul by Govan as both of them hit the deck. Cartwright went on to hit both free throws and Providence would eventually win 73-69.

Ewing’s final play was a bit of a head scratcher. As he and Cooley traded off timeouts, giving Ewing plenty of time to draw up a play with 4.1 seconds remaining, Ewing eventually went with a hail mary pass to half court, which was stolen away by Cartwright. There were three Friars in the area of the pass, thus making the Hoyas’ last play a bit confusing. Jalen Lindsay would hit the free throws after the debacle of the Hoyas’ possession and give the Friars a W.

Game Notes

  • Four Friars finished in double-figures tonight: Lindsey (17), Jackson (16 and 6), Diallo (11 and 12), and Young (11 and 7). Rodney Bullock finished with just 4 points on 2/8 shooting.
  • Govan led the way for the Hoyas with 27 points on 11/18 shooting. He was the only Georgetown player in double figures.
  • Providence is now tied for third in the Big East with Creighton at 7-4.
  • For those apparel-heads, the Friars debuted some pretty awesome warmups on Tuesday night:
  • 2014 Big East Champion Kadeem Batts was courtside tonight at the Dunk tonight.