Hoyas reload for Classic weekend

November 18, 2010

The Hoyas will need all hands on deck to win the Charleston Classic. (Photo by Jackson Perry)

Playing three games in four days, as the Hoyas are about to do in the Charleston Classic would tax any team’s depth. So when the team boarded a bus to South Carolina without two of their starters, it was definitely cause for concern.

The Hoyas will need all hands on deck to win the Charleston Classic. (Photo by Jackson Perry)

Fortunately for head coach John Thompson III and Georgetown fans everywhere, both Julian Vaughn and Jason Clark have arrived in Charleston and are expected to play in the tournament, which begins today at noon against Coastal Carolina.

Clark’s presence was never much in doubt, but the sophomore guard stayed behind temporarily to continue dealing with the death of his grandmother, who passed away on Monday before the Hoyas’ game against Tulane. Clark played that night and had a career game, posting his first-ever double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds.

“She wanted me to keep playing basketball,” Clark said of his grandmother after the game. “She said when this day comes, she wanted me to continue this and she wanted me to succeed. So I knew she would want me to play today.”

Vaughn, who had been hospitalized earlier this week and missed  Monday’s game, was a much bigger question mark. On Wednesday, however, Vaughn finally rejoined his teammates, and the Voice received confirmation from Georgetown Sports Information Director Mex Carey that the big man has been medically cleared to play.

The Hoyas will be happy to have their most veteran post presence back on the court with them, but Vaughn will hardly alleviate the need for major contributions from the Georgetown bench.

Georgetown will play three games this weekend no matter what. If the tourney’s implied seeding holds, the Hoyas will face Wofford, a NCAA tournament team last season, and North Carolina State, an ACC dark horse contender.

Three games in such rapid succession will test a relatively inexperienced group of reserves, especially in the frontcourt. The backup bigs held their own in Vaughn’s absence against Tulane, but the quality of competition should vastly exceed that of the Green Wave by weekend’s end.

Junior Henry Sims, in his first career start, showed signs of improvement from an inconsistent first two seasons, grabbing five rebounds and altering a number of plays on defense.

The most intriguing frontcourt fill-in, however, was freshman Nate Lubick. The forward didn’t stuff the stat sheet, but over his first two games, he has shown flashes of the player he could become, such as on a pretty give-and-go for his only two points against Tulane. Expect Lubick to take on a bigger role as the season develops, along with classmate Moses Ayegba, who is ineligible for the first nine games of the season.

“I think as the year goes on the whole freshman class, including Moses Ayegba when we get him back, will help add to the depth that we have,” Thompson said. “They are all going to be players. They are all going to play a significant role as we go along.”

In the meantime, expect the Hoyas to continue to rely on the backcourt trio of Clark, Austin Freeman, and Chris Wright to carry the team. In Charleston, however, they will undoubtedly need some relief over the course of three games. When that happens, Georgetown’s newfound depth will have to rise to the occasion.

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Nice article! Let’s Go Hoyas! One day and one game at a time, get some rest and ball out! Hoya Saxa!


The Hoya Dream Season continues…