Georgetown Shines At Wooden Classic

December 13, 2009

Anaheim, CA - The Georgetown Hoyas were impressive in defeating the Washington Huskies 74-66 on Saturday afternoon at the Wooden Classic. The victory ran Georgetown's record to 11-0 to start the season.

The first half was a high-energy defensive struggle that concluded with Georgetown holding a slim 30-29 lead. Both teams were extremely athletic and the Washington guards had some early success getting into the lane.

The game was broken open when Georgetown opened the second half with a 21-2 run that gave them a 51-31 lead. When pressed about the reason for the poor second half start, Washington coach Lorenzo Romar merely shook his head and noted, "If I could answer that I would write a book and make a million dollars...I didn't see that coming."

Nor would Romar accept that Georgetown's superior size was the difference in the second half, noting the big second half consisted primarily of Georgetown perimeter players "driving the ball to the basket." Supporting Romar's contention was the fact that the Huskies actually out-rebounded the bigger Hoyas, 33 to 32.

However, the size of Georgetown's interior big men did appear to be disruptive on both ends of the court. 6'9" junior Julian Vaughn had a team-high 18 points while 6'11" sophomore center Greg Monroe scored 15 points and established himself in the paint early and often.

All five Georgetown starters finished in double digits. When it was suggested by a reporter that Georgetown may not have great depth off the bench, Georgetown Coach John Thompson III dismissed that issue as a concern, pointing out that conference rival Syracuse "only plays 7 guys" and that they "appear to be playing pretty well."

One might have thought that the Huskies would have had the home court advantage, considering the game was played on the West Coast. However, a strong Georgetown contingent made their presence felt in the arena. When I asked him about whether he noticed the crowd noise, Thompson admitted he definitely noticed the Pro-Georgetown crowd, noting that the large national alumni of Georgetown University included a sizeable West Coast base and he took the time to thank the fans who enthusiastically supported his team.

With a little over 6 minutes left, Georgetown held a 20-point lead, 60-40. It could have been much worse at that point if not for the steady play of Washington's 6'6" senior forward Quincy Pondexter, who finished with 23 points on 10-15 shooting.

Washington valiantly tried to make the game close in the last 5 minutes, with 5'8" Sophomore Isaiah Thomas finally finding his groove. The extremely quick Thomas, who finished with 21 points, struggled in the first half and appeared a little out of control at times, but made back-to-back 3's in the last few minutes to cut the lead to 69-63.

Romar noted he was not surprised or disturbed that Thomas and Pondexter essentially, carried the offensive load, "because they have been doing that all season."

Thomas also had perhaps the highlight play of the game with an electrifying 360 spin off the dribble before scoring over Georgetown Center Greg Monroe in the second half. However, such success going to the basket was infrequent against the Georgetown defense which forced 25 turnovers from the Huskies.

Ultimately, Georgeown proved to be too much for the Huskies, who should feel relieved that the Pac-10 season will soon start. Despite their loss today, the Huskies should be a threat for the Pac-10 title in a very down year for that conference.

By Manish Pandya
Staff Editor for

Photographs by Tri Le
Photography Editor for

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