Off the Marcus: Hoyas fall to Villanova in Derrickson’s absence

March 4, 2018

In its final game of the regular season, the Georgetown men’s basketball team (15-14, 5-13 Big East) fell to the No. 4 Villanova Wildcats (27-4, 14-4 Big East) 97-73 at Wells Fargo Arena.

Junior center Jessie Govan led the Hoyas and all scorers with a career-high 30 points to go along with eight rebounds. For the Wildcats, junior guard Mikal Bridges had 24 points and six rebounds, junior guard Jalen Brunson added 16 points and seven assists, and five total players scored in double figures.

“They’re a great team. They’re very well coached,” Georgetown head coach Patrick Ewing said of Villanova. “They make you pay for every mistake that you make.”

Junior forward Marcus Derrickson, the Hoyas’ leading scorer in Big East play, was a last-minute scratch with a right ankle injury. According to Ewing, the injury had been bothering Derrickson for about a week and was “getting worse.”

“Not having Marcus hurt. It’s hard to play a great team like Villanova without one of your best players,” Ewing said.

Shooting efficiency, especially from beyond the arc, was a major difference maker in the game. The Wildcats shot 57.4 percent from the field and 45.2 percent from three. The Hoyas shot 42.6 percent from the field and 17.6 percent from three, including 0-9 in the first half.

Georgetown’s first three of the game didn’t come until freshman guard Jamorko Pickett hit one with 15:36 remaining in the second half to cut the Hoyas’ deficit to nine. Bridges hit a three of his own on the ensuing Villanova possession and the Wildcats would lead by double digits for the remainder of the game.

“We really shared the ball. We got good shots tonight,” Villanova head coach Jay Wright said. This was Wright’s 413th win for the Wildcats, tying Alex Severance for the most as a Villanova head coach.

With the Hoyas going cold from outside, it was left to Govan to lead the offense. The junior, who along with Derrickson has been one of Georgetown’s best players this season, shot an efficient 10-15 from the field and 10-10 from the free throw line, the one area where Georgetown had an advantage over Villanova. Defended by Villanova freshmen forwards Omari Spellman and Dhamir Cosby-Roundtree, Govan was able to score with a combination of post moves, put-backs, and spot-up jumpers.

Despite the loss, the Hoyas finish the regular season with a winning record for the first time since the 2014-15 season, thanks in large part to an easy non-conference schedule to start the season where the team went 10-1.

Georgetown will face St. John’s (15-16, 4-14 Big East) on Wednesday at Madison Square Garden in the first round of the Big East Tournament. Follow @GUVoiceSports on Twitter for more game updates and breaking news.

Jon Block
Jon was podcast editor, Halftime leisure editor, and Halftime sports editor for the Voice. You can follow him on Twitter @jon_block_ but not on Instagram because he doesn't have one.

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