Postgame Roundup: Blue Demons dash Hoyas’ NCAA Tournament aspirations

BIG EAST TOURNEY '14

NEW YORK—Entering their first round matchup with DePaul (12-20, 3-15 Big East), the Georgetown men’s basketball team (17-14, 8-10 Big East) had defeated the Blue Demons in 14 consecutive meetings, including twice this season, dating all the way back to 1994. Apparently, DePaul was due for a win in the worst possible way, yet at the worst possible time for the Hoyas, as the Blue Demons grinded out a 60-56 win in a traditional Big East slugfest late Wednesday night at Madison Square Garden. The loss by Georgetown all but eliminates their chances for a NCAA Tournament at-large bid on Selection Sunday.

“Tonight’s loss is disappointing,” Georgetown Head Coach John Thompson III said following the devastating defeat.

Having entered the game needing a win in order to maintain their bubble status, the Hoyas came out rolling from the opening tip to a 17-9 lead, their largest of the game, midway through the first half. The Blue Demons then scored 11 unanswered points, holding Georgetown scoreless for a duration of 6:31. Both teams then alternated leads for the rest of the half with the Hoyas entering halftime with a rocky 25-23 lead.

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Vox’s Super Duper Big East Tournament Preview

With the end of the Big East regular-season comes the commencement of the Big East Tournament. And with the Hoyas fighting for their NCAA Tournament lives, Georgetown fans certainly will have their eyes fixated more than usual on New York’s Madison Square Garden starting this Wednesday night. Don’t worry or feel overwhelmed, though, because Vox has you covered. We take to you team-by-team with what’s at stake, who’s worth watching, and our predictions. When you’re done reading this, Vox expects you will be a Big East savant.

Rankings are in accordance with tournament seeding.

10. DePaul (11-20, 3-15 Big East)

RPI: 157

First Game: #7 Georgetown, Wednesday at 9:30p.m.

Record In Last 12 Games: 1-11

What They’re Playing For: Having played themselves out of any postseason tournament consideration, DePaul will look to win its first Big East Tournament game since 2009.

Most Impressive Thing They Did This Year: Umm…

Blue Demon to Watch: Senior guard Brandon Young (16.2 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 3.6 APG)

For the consistently awful Blue Demons, Young has played consistently well since the abrupt dismissal of then-leading scorer Cleveland Melvin from the team on Feb. 10. A shoot-first point guard, Young has scored 23 or more points in three of his last four games, including 29 against Marquette on Feb. 22.

Chances of Winning Big East: .00000000000000000000000000000000000001%

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Postgame Roundup: Super ‘Nova Pops Hoyas’ NCAA Bubble

PHILADELPHIA—The NCAA Tournament bubble might have just burst for the Georgetown men’s basketball team (17-13, 8-10 Big East) in their regular season finale, as they let a prime résumé-building opportunity go to waste against No. 6 Villanova (28-3, 16-2 Big East) in a 77-59 loss on Saturday afternoon.

“We have to play better than we did today,” Georgetown head coach John Thompson III said following the loss.

The Hoyas encountered difficulties right from the opening tip, with five turnovers in the opening five minutes of the game. As a result, the Wildcats jumped out to a 14-7 lead, from which they never looked back.

“We have a small margin of error. We came out early and had unnecessary, unforced turnovers,” Thompson said. “[Our] turnovers led to transition baskets for them, which … got them going. We tried to claw back and had some missed opportunities.”

For the game, the Blue and Gray had 18 total turnovers, which the Wildcats converted into 22 points. Georgetown sophomore guard D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera, who finished with 14 points and a team-high five rebounds, believes that the Blue and Gray were overzealous on the offensive end compared to their last three games, where they only had 17 turnovers combined.

“We were just trying to make home-run plays instead of being simple, playing how we usually play,” Smith-Rivera said. “We just forced a lot of things that we shouldn’t have. They came up with steals and got a lot of transition baskets.” Read More

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Postgame Roundup: Hoyas fly past Bluejays on senior night

Propelled by the strong backcourt play of senior guard Markel Starks and sophomore guard D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera, the Georgetown men’s basketball team will live to fight another day in their quest for an NCAA Tournament berth, as they defeated No. 13 Creighton (23-6, 13-4 Big East) 75-63 on Senior Night at Verizon Center.

On a night where five seniors were honored for their contributions to the program over the past four years, the Hoyas came out with urgency and energy right from the opening tip, as they shot 62 percent from the field in the opening half to give them a 42-28 lead they never looked back from.

“I’m so glad that we came out with the victory, it was a much needed victory on many different levels,” said Starks.

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You’ve Been a Bad, Bad Hoya: Sochi Edition

Bad, Bad Hoya

Jamaica may have a bobsled team, but its Caribbean neighbor Dominica fielded not one, but two cross-country ski competitors in the Sochi Olympic Games, which concluded a few short days ago.

Dominica, a tiny island nation of around 72,000 people, doesn’t really have any native skiers, or even snow to ski on. What Dominica does have, however, is a path to citizenship, and, by extension, the Olympics, for the low, low price of $178,530.

That was the path taken–or, so says Deadspin’s Dave McKenna–by one Gary di Silvestri (COL ’89), a New York native, and his Italian-born wife, Angelica Morrone di Silvestri.

Having made “a financial contribution to the country that went to different projects” after a visit to Dominica “years ago” (di Silvestri’s own words), the couple became dual citizens. Around 2012 – though the exact details are hazy –, the di Silvestris created the Dominica Ski Federation, and subsequently began to hop the globe, from one cross-country skiing event to another, in an attempt to qualify for Sochi in 2014.

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Postgame Roundup: Hoyas take Musketeers down

Only 36 hours removed from their disheartening road loss Thursday night to Seton Hall, the Georgetown men’s basketball team (16-11, 7-8 Big East) regained their form Saturday at Verizon Center, as they cruised to a 74-52 blowout win over Xavier (18-9, 8-6 Big East). The win snaps the Hoyas’ two-game losing streak and avenges their earlier defeat this season to the Musketeers, who came back from a 17-point deficit en route to an 80-67 win on Jan. 15.

“It feels good because they beat us the first time and you’re able to get them back,” Georgetown Head Coach John Thompson III said following the game.

In their past two contests against St. John’s and Seton Hall, lackluster starts to the game doomed the Hoyas’ prospects for success. In an effort to reverse this alarming trend, Thompson inserted junior forward Jabril Trawick into the starting lineup to replace freshman forward Reggie Cameron. The tinkering surely paid dividends for the Blue and Gray, as they jumped out to a 42-26 halftime lead which they never looked back from. As a result, Thompson anticipates starting Trawick in the future.

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Georgetown in the Olympics: Hoyas who are more athletic than Vox could ever hope to be

Over the years, Georgetown has sent quite a few athletes to go for the gold and represent the good ol’ USA in the Olympics. Here’s a brief look at a few of these Hoyas.

Check out a more in-depth look at some Georgetown Olympians in this week’s feature in the Voice tomorrow.

Aimee Mullins (SFS ’98): Track and Field, 1996 Paralympics

An amazingly inspirational story, Mullins was the first double amputee to compete in NCAA Division 1 track and field during her time at Georgetown, double majoring in history and diplomacy. She then went on to compete in the 1996 Paralympics in Atlanta, shocking the world with her record-breaking times.

Missy Schwen Ryan (COL ’94): Rowing, 1996 and 2000 Olympics

Ryan won a silver medal in rowing in the 1996 Olympics. After recovering from a kidney donation to her brother months after the ’96 games, Ryan came back to win a bronze medal in the 2000 Olympics. In 2010 she was inducted into the rowing National Hall of Fame.

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Rob Sgarlata (C’94) hired as new football head coach

Georgetown Athletic Director Lee Reed announced today that Rob Sgarlata (C’94) has been named the new head coach of the Georgetown football program. Sgarlata has been a member of the Georgetown coaching staff for the past 18 seasons, including the last eight as Assistant Head Coach/Defensive Coordinator. He replaces Kevin Kelly, who resigned to become the defensive coordinator at Ball State. Since Kelly’s departure on Jan. 30, Sgarlata served as interim head coach of the program.

“Rob Sgarlata brings a wealth of relevant experience to his new leadership role in our football program,” Reed said. “As a coach and an educator, he has shown his commitment to the holistic development of student-athletes as well as his passion for the game of football. I look forward to working with Rob to ensure that Georgetown football is a quality experience for his players.”

With the hire, the Georgetown football program now has a leader who has lived and breathed Georgetown football for over two decades. Sgarlata, four-year letterman at running back from 1990-1993, is eighth all-time in career rushing attempts for Georgetown. Following his graduation from the College in 1994, where he majored in government and international relations, Sgarlata coached the defensive line from 1995-1996 as well as from 2002-2004. He also served as wide receivers and tight ends coach from 1996-2000 and offensive line coach during the 2001 campaign. In 2005, Sgarlata assumed his defensive coordinator position, where he worked the past eight seasons.

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Hoyas fail to weather the Red Storm’s hot shooting

In a game filled with NCAA Tournament ramifications for both teams, St. John’s (17-9, 7-6 Big East) came out firing from the start, riding a 15-0 game-opening run and hot shooting to a 82-60 wire-to-wire victory over Georgetown (15-10, 6-7 Big East). The Red Storm exacted revenge for their earlier loss at the hands of the Hoyas, who defeated them in similar blowout fashion 77-60 at Verizon Center Jan. 4.

“We all know that today wasn’t how we want to play,” junior guard Jabril Trawick said. “That was unacceptable and we just got to come out and play hard every minute of the game. We can’t have any lapses like we did tonight.”

The Hoyas failed to contain the St. John’s backcourt duo of junior guard D’Angelo Harrison and freshman guard Rysheed Jordan, as each erupted for a game-high 24 points, with two-headed tandem shooting a combined 15-of-26 from the field. Harrison. In their prior matchup against the Hoyas, the two guards only managed a combined 6 points, with Harrison alone shooting an anemic 1-of-12 from the field.

“We did a good job playing as a group. We were hungry for this win,” Harrison said. “We came out with a lot of energy.”

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Postgame Roundup: Hoyas overcome Friars for fourth straight win

In a back-and-forth affair at Verizon Center Monday night, which saw both teams exchange eight different leads, as well tied on five different occasions, the Georgetown men’s basketball team (15-9, 6-6 Big East) prevailed over Providence (16-9, 6-6 Big East) 83-71.

Providence senior guard Bryce Cotton erupted for 31 points, but the Hoyas’ hot shooting in the second half proved decisive, as the Blue and Gray extended their winning streak to four games. Down 54-47 with 10:25 remaining in the second half, the Hoyas went on a 36-17 run to close the game and get themselves back to .500 in Big East play for the first time since Jan. 18.

“We still have a ways to go. I like the way our guys are competing,” Georgetown Head Coach John Thompson III said following the victory. “We’ve had different guys step up and make big plays.”

The Georgetown backcourt of sophomore guard D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera and senior guard Markel Starks continued their strong performance from their previous game against Butler, as the duo shot a combined 13-of-25 from the field. Smith-Rivera padded the stat sheet with a team-high 22 points and five assists, as well as five rebounds.

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