The Georgetown men’s basketball team (2-0, Big East) rode its hot shooting hand to a decisive 102-68 victory over visiting Mount St. Mary’s (0-3, Northeastern) on Wednesday night at Capital One Arena. The Hoyas were led by junior center Jessie Govan’s 20 points, 14 rebounds, and 4 assists, while the Mountaineers were aided by senior guard Junior Robinson, who scored 26 points on 9-19 shooting.
“We handled the pressure a lot better than we did [on Sunday],” Georgetown head coach Patrick Ewing said. “We’ve got different guys stepping up.”
Wednesday’s victory featured a much more balanced scoring attack from the Blue & Gray, as five players finished the game with double-digit points. Junior forward Marcus Derrickson opened the scoring on the game’s first possession with a hook shot from the block. After temporarily exchanging baskets, the Hoyas began to take control of the game, utilizing their size and outside shooting abilities. Govan showed his shooting range on multiple occasions, including a four-point play after just four minutes of action.
Contributions from sophomore guard Jagan Mosely, who played extended minutes due to senior guard Jonathan Mulmore’s foul trouble, and freshman forward Jamorko Pickett helped the Hoyas extend their lead as the half continued. The duo combined with junior guard Kaleb Johnson to score 20 consecutive points for the Blue & Gray midway through the half, and Georgetown enjoyed a 40-23 advantage after a Mosely 3-pointer with 6:06 remaining in the half.
“I’m comfortable in any spot,” Mosely said of his sixth-man role. “Whenever someone gets in foul trouble or isn’t playing well, I’m ready to step up.”
“I love his toughness. He’s not starting but he doesn’t complain. All he does is step up and play his guts out,” Ewing said.
The Mountaineers ran their offense through 5-foot-5 senior guard Junior Robinson and sophomore center Ryan Gomes throughout the half. Robinson’s quickness presented problems for the Hoyas’ pick-and-roll defense, leading to several open layups for Gomes. Ewing wasted no time in calling a timeout just 3:30 into the game to make adjustments. From then on, the Hoyas forced the Mountaineers to settle for outside jumpers. The team shot 48 percent from the field in the half, but struggled to shoot from the perimeter, connecting on just 29 percent of 3-point attempts. In contrast, Georgetown shot 7-12 (58 percent) from deep and 19-30 (63 percent) in the half to secure a 54-36 lead at the break.
“We gave away the roll. You know, the roll is what hurt us,” Ewing said. “We did a poor job of closing up the paint and also getting back to shooters… They can put the ball on the floor and create.”
“I thought we got some good looks. We were right at one point per possession in the first half,” Mount St. Mary’s head coach Jamion Christian said. “We got a lot of easy layups and a lot of easy dunks.”
In the second half, Govan picked up right where he left off, scoring five points in the opening minute of action. His layup two minutes later gave Georgetown a 26-point lead with 17:00 to play, but Mount St. Mary’s found its groove from the outside to cut into the lead. An 14-2 run, which featured three 3-pointers, cut the lead to 14 midway through the half.
“Sometimes, when they go on a run, you kind of look to make big plays,” Johnson said. “I just told the guys, ‘Just stay calm. Try not to turn the ball over and try to do the little things. Don’t always try to go for the home run.’”
The Mountaineers were unable to sustain their hot shooting, however, and Georgetown regained a sizeable lead shortly after, with Govan dominating in the middle of the floor and freshman guard Jahvon Blair knocking down jumpers. Govan nearly logged a second half double-double, scoring 11 points and grabbing 8 rebounds. Blair scored an efficient 11 points on 5-8 shooting in 11 minutes during the half, and the Hoyas cruised to a 34-point victory.
Georgetown outrebounded Mount St. Mary’s 51-23 and committed 16 turnovers to the visitors’ nine. The Hoyas shot an impressive 57.4 percent from the floor, including 50 percent from behind the arc.
The Blue & Gray will look to finish their opening week undefeated when they host University of Maryland Eastern Shore (1-1, MEAC) on Saturday at noon. The game can be streamed on the Fox Sports Network. Follow @GUVoiceSports for game day updates and breaking news.
Image Credits: Jake Gilstrap/The Georgetown Voice