Coming off a three game losing streak that started with an overtime loss to UMass and ended with a 30 point slaughter at Villanova, the Providence Friars needed something to salvage their middle-of-the-season woes. Georgetown University, who was undefeated in conference play, would be a tough test but the Friars needed to capitalize. Providence was able to snag an early lead and, despite a few scares, held on to cruise away, 70-52, for their first win over the Hoyas since 2005.
Providence jumped in front of the Hoyas to start the game, going up 6-0 after two layups from Bryce Cotton and a jumper from Kadeem Batts. Georgetown didn’t put any points on the board until the 14:48 mark thanks to three turnovers and missing all five field goal attempts. After a timeout at 14:04, the Friars went on a 7-2 run, putting them up by double digits on the Hoyas, 14-4. However, after a three pointer from Cotton at 11:25 to get Providence’s lead to 14 the Friars went on a five minute scoring drought where they went 0-8 from the field.
During that time the Hoyas failed to take full advantage of the situation, allowing Providence to grab six rebounds and maintain offensive possession. Georgetown did go on a 10-0 run during this time, with Mikael Hopkins leading the way for Georgetown. The score would’ve been tied 14-all if not for LaDontae Henton and Cotton converting on 3-4 free throws, keeping the Friars ahead 17-14. Kadeem Batts got the Friars back in gear with 6:09 left in the first thanks to a second chance layup after Josh Fortune missed his layup attempt, but Georgetown wasn’t done yet.
With 4:37 left Batts put the Friars up 21-15, but Georgetown’s D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera responded with an open three pointer to close the gap to a possession. Georgetown began pressuring the Friars in the backcourt, and Fortune threw the ball up while being double-teamed, only to have Hopkins steal it. After a missed first opportunity on offense, Smith-Rivera was dished the offensive rebound by Markel Starks and put up another open three pointer, tying the game at 21. Kadeem converted on all four of his following free throws, putting the Friars back up 25-21, but Smith-Rivera answered with yet another jumper. The two teams tussled, with Georgetown trying to get even with the Friars, and Providence trying to hang onto the lead. A last second layup by Josh Fortune put the Friars up at the half, 28-23.
Georgetown started the second half by striking 11 seconds in, thanks to a layup from Nate Lubick. Providence responded with a field goal from each of their respective seniors. With 17:42 left in the game, Josh Fortune came alive. The Friars were up 32-27 when Fortune drained a three to put the Friars up six. Georgetown would come back to close the gap to three points, 37-34, with 15:18 left in the game, only to have Fortune hit a second three to put the Friars up by six again a minute later. This three started a run that the Hoyas had no answer for. Georgetown’s Jabril Trawick tried to answer with a three of his own, but Fortune grabbed the defensive rebound and hit his third three in four minutes, putting the Friars up by nine. Georgetown took a timeout. It wouldn’t help.
The Friars continued to drain their shots and attack the glass, going on an 11-0 run to put them up 51-34. Georgetown put together a response, going on a 6-0 run from 10:02 to 5:37, but it was too little, too late. The Friars were up by a double digit lead they would hold onto for the remainder of the game thanks to a mix of a strong defensive effort and some great playmaking on offense. Georgetown would never get closer than 11, and the Friars answered every field goal and free throw with one of their own.
With 2:20 left, the Friars were up 62-48, and Georgetown began fouling. It did little to move the Hoyas closer to the Friars. The Friars went 8-10 from the free throw line during the last two minutes, resulting in a final score of 70-52, marking the first time the Friars have won this matchup since March, 2005.