Just four seconds into the game, Georgetown freshman Brandon Bowman took a pass from junior forward Mike Sweetney, sailed to the hoop and slammed it home, exemplifying the ease with which the Hoyas cruised to a 99-46 victory in their season opener against Grambling State Friday at MCI Center.

Georgetown began the game with a 23-4 run to open up what would become an insurmountable lead for the offensively woeful Tigers, who, with 11:22 remaining in the game had as many turnovers (20) as points. The Hoyas capitalized on the Tigers’ mistakes, scoring 40 points off turnovers.

Despite a few cold stretches, Georgetown scored easily, shooting 54.4 percent for the game, including draining seven of 13 three-point attempts.

Sweetney played just 18 minutes but led the Hoyas with 21 points and 12 rebounds despite fighting a cold. Freshman guard Ashanti Cook and sophomore guard Tony Bethel, who was also feeling under the weather, provided solid shooting performances from outside. Bethel hit four of five three-pointers, while Cook converted both of his chances. Cook’s only gaffe was missing a showtime fast-break dunk despite having most of his forearm above the rim.

“I learned you should never judge Ashanti Cook by how he practices,” Esherick said. “His best three days for us have been our three games against Latvia, Princeton and [Grambling]. He doesn’t come close to dunking in practice, but he’s had a couple of the most spectacular dunks in the first couple of games.”

Bethel finished with 16 points on six of eight shooting, while Cook scored 13 points on seven shots in 19 minutes of play.

Cook’s high-school teammate Bowman also enjoyed a sparkling Georgetown debut, surprisingly cracking the starting lineup and then entertaining the 8,204 in attendance with a series of jams, including a reverse that extended the lead to 27-10 with 8:33 remaining in the first half.

“I started Bowman based on the last week of practice,” Esherick said of the starting lineup that featured Bowman, Riley, Sweetney and Wilson with Bethel at the point. “I’ve been fiddling around with the lineup since Oct. 12. I went with the team that I thought could start the game on the most positive note and that was with Brandon Bowman.”

Esherick added that he thought the starting lineup would likely not change for Monday’s game against James Madison.

“I thought Drew gave us something and Ashanti gave us something, so it’s not particularly easy,” Esherick said. “But I like decisions where I have choices.”

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