The Georgetown men’s basketball team (15-12, 5-11 Big East) fell at home to Providence (18-12, 9-7 Big East), 74-69 on Saturday. Junior center Jessie Govan led all scorers with 20 points in the loss, also grabbing 11 rebounds for his 14th double-double of the season. Govan scored his 1,000th career point during the contest.
“It’s an honor. There’s a lot of great names on that list,” Govan said. “I wish my team would have won, but getting 1,000 points was definitely a goal I had in the beginning of the season. I saw it was something that was realistic, something that was doable, and I’m glad I was able to do it.”
Junior forward Marcus Derrickson added a double-double of his own with 11 points and 15 rebounds, and sophomore guard Jagan Mosely and freshman guard Jamorko Pickett scored 12 points each.
The Friars were led by senior forward Rodney Bullock’s 19 points, including 5-7 from beyond the arc, improving on the four points he scored during the two teams’ first matchup in Providence. Senior guard Kyron Cartwright added 16 points and nine assists, and sophomore guard Alpha Diallo provided 14 and nine assists.
“It was a hard fought game,” Georgetown head coach Patrick Ewing said. “Just didn’t get it done.”
Neither team scored for the first minute and a half, and the teams traded baskets through the first media timeout. By the second media timeout, three-pointers from Derrickson and Pickett helped the Hoyas open a five point lead, which would eventually swell to eight with a three from freshman guard Jahvon Blair at the 9:03 mark.
The teams exchanged runs, as an 8-0 run from Providence tied the game at 23 before Georgetown went on a 9-2 run of their own to get the lead back to seven. Govan got a dunk on a fast break to lead into the under-four media timeout as part of a monster first half, and scored a layup with two seconds before halftime to give him 14 points on 7-8 shooting, leading the Hoyas to a 40-35 halftime lead.
The Hoyas shot 54.8 percent in the first half and 50 percent from beyond the arc, though the biggest advantage came from inside, where Georgetown held a 22-12 advantage in points in the paint. Bullock and Diallo were a combined 5-7 from three-point land in the first half and were aided by freshman center Nate Watson, who added 10 points, two blocks, and two steals in the period and would finish with 12 points.
The script would flip in the second half though, as Providence suddenly had the hot hand while the Hoyas went cold. Georgetown shot just 27.6 percent from the field in the second half while Providence shot 51.9 percent, including 5-7 from deep. Bullock and Cartwright combined to go 4-5 from beyond the arc in the period.
The Hoyas’ five point lead evaporated after four early points from Providence senior guard Jalen Lindsey, before Georgetown junior guard/forward Kaleb Johnson scored Georgetown’s first points of the half from the line. Derrickson left the court momentarily with an injury, but would return a minute later and played the rest of the game.
The Hoyas appeared to have recovered from the early flurry and built the lead back to five at the 15:24 mark, but two quick three pointers from Cartwright gave the Friars their first lead in over 20 minutes of game time. Ewing was assessed a technical foul on the ensuing offensive possession, and Diallo sunk two free throws before Bullock hit a mid-range jumper, extending the Friars lead to five. Pickett hit a three, but Bullock answered with two threes of his own in what would ultimately be an 18-3 Providence run.
Georgetown came out of the under-eight timeout pressing and created problems for the Friars, who saw an 11 point lead cut down to four in two and a half minutes. During this stretch, Govan hit a three that broke the 1,000 career points milestone.
“It got them back into the game,” Providence head coach Ed Cooley said of Georgetown’s press. “We had two turnovers against it, and then we had two quick missed shots.”
Derrickson’s jumper with 3:08 to go brought the Hoyas within one, and the teams would trade baskets until a Providence timeout with 1:04 to go. After a scramble when the ball was poked loose from Cartwright, Diallo picked up the loose ball and got an and-one layup with an opportunity to extend the lead to four. He missed, but Georgetown was unable to capitalize, with Blair missing a floater with 22 seconds remaining.
“The play broke down,” Govan said. “Jahvon tried to create, but just wound up missing.”
Bullock made it a five point game with two free throws, and Derrickson’s desperation three with five seconds to go missed. Yet another close matchup went against the Hoyas, who have now lost eight straight games against Providence.
“We’re going through growing pains,” Ewing said. “For right now, it’s just going to be nights like this, but we’re going to keep on striving to get better. But the best is still yet to come.”
Georgetown hosts Marquette (16-12, 7-9 Big East) on Monday at 7:00 p.m. ET, and the game will be broadcast on FS1. Follow @GUVoiceSports on Twitter for more updates and breaking news.