Georgetown basketball head coach Patrick Ewing may have caught lightning in the bottle.
The Hoyas (15-10, 5-9 Big East) notched perhaps the biggest victory of their coach’s young career, defeating Butler (17-10, 7-7 Big East) 87-83 at Hinkle Fieldhouse. Georgetown withstood a furious rally from the Bulldogs, in stark contrast to late-game collapses that have dogged the team throughout the season.
“We’ve lost six or seven games when we’ve had the lead,” Ewing said. “If my team hasn’t learned from that yet, then we aren’t going to learn anything. I thought we showed some resiliency and were able to make plays at the end both offensively and defensively.”
Junior forward Marcus Derrickson followed up a 22 point, 18 rebound performance on Saturday with 27 points on 11-13 shooting, leading the Georgetown scoring effort. Junior center Jessie Govan added a double-double with 17 points and 12 rebounds for the Hoyas, who shot 59 percent for the game and trailed for just 50 seconds. The Hoyas also received a breakout performance from graduate student guard Trey Dickerson, who scored a season-high 18 points off the bench. Senior forward Kelan Martin, who scored 27 in the first matchup with Georgetown, led the Butler scoring effort with 22 points but shot just 8-23 from the field. Sophomore guard Kamar Baldwin added 16 points and seven assists for the Bulldogs, who shot just 5-22 from three-point range. Butler has now lost three in a row and is at risk of falling out of NCAA Tournament contention.
Georgetown was sharp to start the game, taking an 11-7 lead to the first TV timeout. The Hoyas would extend their first-half lead to 11, before the Bulldogs went on a 12-4 run to make it 22-19 with 10:36 remaining. Georgetown would go into the halftime break with a 44-39 lead, thanks to a three-pointer by freshman Jamorko Pickett with 1:13 remaining.
The Hoyas would not relent in the second period, opening up a 14-point lead on a Derrickson and-one play with 14:04 remaining, and would hold their largest lead at 75-60 with 7:38 to go on a three-pointer by sophomore guard Jagan Mosely. The Bulldogs would not go away though, scoring six straight points after a Dickerson layup, to make it 84-81 with 1:27 remaining. However, Georgetown would ice the game, as senior guard Jonathan Mulmore hit two free throws followed by a miss by Butler, removing any doubt that the Hoyas would leave Indianapolis with their second win in as many years.
The win ensures that Georgetown will not finish 2018 with a losing record, though the Hoyas cannot finish with a winning record in Big East play. The Hoyas move a half-game behind Marquette (14-11, 5-8 Big East) for seventh place in the conference, aiming for their highest finish in the league since 2015.
Georgetown will look to continue their winning ways after a long break, returning to the hardwood on February 21 against No. 4 Xavier (23-3, 11-2 Big East). Tip-off is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. ET and the broadcast is TBD. Follow @GUVoiceSports for game day updates and breaking news.
Image Credits: Georgetown Sports Information