Georgetown Continues Big East Dominance, Rivals Villanova and Pittsburgh Meet for Final Time

On Saturday, #7 Georgetown (23,4, 13-3) grabbed its 11th straight win after defeating Rutgers (13-14, 4-12), 64-51. Once again Hoyas Otto Porter, Jr. was dominant, scoring 28 points with eight rebounds.

He fared really well on the free throw line, going 15 for 18–the most by a Georgetown player since April 1, 2003 with Mike Sweetney’s 16 shots.

Add in his four steals, three blocks, along with two assists and that’s a complete day.

Syracuse forward Otto Porter

Hoyas coach John Thompson III said of his star player via CBS Sports, “Stating the obvious, he can score in a lot of different ways. From Day 1, Otto Porter has done everything. And so you look at the rebounds. You look at the deflections. Communication. It’s not just about the scoring.”

Georgetown sits at the top of the Big East standings and has two games remaining in the regular season: Villanova on Wednesday and Syracuse on Saturday.

As for the #12 Orange (22-7, 10-6), they have lost three consecutive games after their 58-53 loss on Saturday against Louisville (24-5, 12-4). It was a tied game with under a minute remaining but the Cardinals won with three-pointers and foul shots. This snapped a three-game losing streak.

Also with the win, Louisville is now tied with Marquette (21-7, 12-4), who defeated Notre Dame on Saturday, by a half game behind the Hoyas. The team will end its regular season against #21 Notre Dame next Saturday.

Cincinnati (20-9, 8-8) defeated Connecticut (19-9, 9-7), 61-56 on Saturday and with the win, it kept their hopes alive for the Big Dance.

And who said the Big Ten had all the good teams?

As the weekend concludes, on Sunday, #23 Pittsburgh (22-7, 10-6) plays Villanova (18-11, 9-7). The Panthers sit in spot No. 5, tied with Syracuse and Marquette.

With Georgetown’s dominance, will they go all the way in April? They have 60 to 1 odds to do so.

#23 Pittsburgh vs. Villanova

Sunday’s game represents Pittsburgh’s last home game as a member of the Big East as they move to the ACC this summer. It’s fitting that its opponent is 53-year rival Villanova to end things.

It is also a game that comes with a much-needed win as the Panthers will need two to grab a double bye in the upcoming conference tournament.

Pitts has won two consecutive games with its most recent victory on Wednesday against South Florida, 64-44. This included a 16-0 run.

The team enters Sunday’s game as the conference’s leader in scoring defense (54.6 per game) and second in field goal percentage (47.3).

Its leading scorer is senior Tray Woodall with 11.5 points per game; he also leads in assists (5.1) and his team is second in the conference for this.

Pittsburgh guard Tray Woodall

In Wednesday’s pounding against USF, Woodall led the team in scoring with 14 points.

Sunday’s game represents the player’s last home game and that not-so-distant 2009 memory of the team’s loss against Villanova that ended its Final Four dreams.

For the Wildcats, they’ll need to shake off Monday’s 66-65 loss against Seton Hall. It snapped a three-game winning streak and now they can’t afford another loss as they march toward a Big Dance invite.

Coach Jay Wright has said of his team via ESPN, “I have confidence in this team. They’re capable of winning. We’ve proven that. Do we have the consistency and maturity yet to finish this season off? I really don’t know.”

Villanova has a young team and will bring sophomore JayVaughan Pinkston as the team’s leading scorer with 12.7 ppg. In Monday’s game, he had 15 points but fouled out. Mouphtaou Yafrou followed with 14 points and 15 rebounds while Darrun Hilliard had 11 points but he too fouled out of the game.

The Wildcats have had some big wins this season, including ones against Louisville, Syracuse and Marquette, but its luck will run out on Saturday as Pitt gets the victory(-9.5)

 

 

 

 

 

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