There is no such thing as a perfect game of basketball, but on Saturday Georgetown came close.
Holding the high-octane Marquette offense to 62 points, the Hoyas (14-12, 5-8 Big East) scored 80 of their own while shooting 53.7 percent overall, 50 percent from three, outrebounding the Golden Eagles (15-10, 6-7 Big East) by 11 and edging them in assists by eight.
Sophomore center Jessie Govan led the way for the Blue and Gray, notching a season-high 23 points to go along with eight rebounds and two three-pointers.
“When Govan plays well, they are a lot to handle,” Marquette Head Coach Steve Wojciechowski said of Georgetown’s elevated play. “He played better than well today, he kicked our butts. He was terrific.”
It was more than just Govan who secured the win, however, with the team’s leading scorers — graduate student and junior guards Rodney Pryor and L.J. Peak — recording 20 points apiece.
Pryor also finished the day with a double-double thanks to 10 rebounds and a heightened effort on the defensive glass. The Hoyas grabbed 31 defensive rebounds while their Big East rival had just six offensive rebounds.
The offensive output from Govan, Pryor and Peak continued to be a formula for success for Georgetown, now 10-1 this season when all three score in double-digits.
“They shared the game, they passed the ball,” Head Coach John Thompson III said of the trio’s offensive success. “[Govan] opens everything up and he was able to get his and spread it around a little bit.”
With the offense meshing well for Georgetown, shots fell consistently over the course of the game. Whether it was backdoor cuts for Pryor and junior forward Akoy Agau or open midrange jumpers for Govan and sophomore forward Marcus Derrickson, the Hoyas scored from every area of the court.
However, the difference in the game came on the other end of the floor, where the Golden Eagles shot a collective 41.8 percent and the Hoyas routinely switched defenders against Marquette pick-and-rolls. As opposed to its usual hedge-and-recover defensive scheme, Georgetown’s switching proved key.
“This isn’t the NBA, we don’t have any NBA players. I hope some of our guys make it to that level but they are not there now,” Wojciechowski said. “You can’t just isolate the big man in the college game, you have to continue to move the ball.”
The isolation possessions that ultimately ended in contested threes saw Marquette shoot 3-of-14 from deep, well below its season shooting average of 41.9 percent.
“That is a very good offensive team. Everyone who’s watched them understands they have good offensive players,” Thompson said of Marquette’s talents. “To only let them attempt 14 three’s, I’ve got to give our guys credit for how hard they worked today.”
Looking ahead, the Hoyas’ strong play has the opportunity to continue in a road test at No. 23 Creighton (21-4, 8-4 Big East) this Sunday in Omaha, Neb.
The game is set to tip off at 3:30 p.m. and will be televised on Fox Sports 1.
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