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No. 7 Georgetown Uses Late Comeback in Second Overtime to Beat UConn, 79-78
Storrs, Conn. - No. 7 Georgetown saw a 12-point second half lead disappear but came back from a 78-71 deficit in the final 1:49 of the second overtime period and sophomore forward Otto Porter Jr. (Morley, Mo./Scott County Central) hit a driving layup with eight seconds left to lift the Hoyas to a stunning 79-78 win over Connecticut at Gampel Pavilion Wednesday night.
It was the 10th-straight win for the Hoyas, who improve to 22-4 overall and 12-3 in the BIG EAST, alone in first place with three league games remaining. Georgetown has won 12 of its last 13 games. UConn falls to 19-8 overall and 9-6 in the BIG EAST.
Porter Jr. scored 22 points and had five rebounds and four assists, including 21 of 22 in the second half and overtime periods and five of Georgetown's final eight points.
Junior guard Markel Starks (Accokeek, Md./Georgetown Prep) scored 19 points, had two rebounds and two steals, while freshman guard D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera (Indianapolis, Ind./Oak Hill) had 14 points, three rebounds and three steals. Sophomore center Mikael Hopkins (Hyattsville, Md./DeMatha) added eight points, four rebounds, two assists and two blocks, and junior forward Nate Lubick (Southborough, Mass./St. Marks) added nine points, seven rebounds and six assists.
UConn's DeAndre Daniels hit a three-pointer to open the period, but a basket from Lubick pulled GU to within one. After a three-pointer from Shabazz Napier gave the Huskies a 75-71 lead, Georgetown turned the ball over and Niels Giffey hit two free throws to push the lead to six points, 77-71. After a missed three from Starks, Giffey hit one more free throw to make it 78-71, but that's when the Georgetown defense took over.
Porter Jr. hit a three from the right wing with 1:49 left and Georgetown forced a turnover with 1:09 left. Smith-Rivera followed with a three-pointer from the right corner with 49 seconds left, cutting the lead to one point. The Smith-Rivera stole the ball from Shabazz Napier with 15 seconds left and Porter Jr. raced down the court, and after a pick from Hopkins, drove to the basket for a layup with eight seconds left, giving the Hoyas a 79-78 lead. A three-pointer from UConn's Ryan Boatright was off the mark at the buzzer as Georgetown escaped with its first-ever win at Gampel Pavilion.
The teams went back and forth in the first overtime period, with a Starks three-point play giving GU a 65-62 lead. A three-pointer from Napier gave UConn a 69-67 lead, but Porter Jr. tied the game on a layup with 2:52 to play. Neither team scored in the final minutes, as a shot from Porter Jr. was blocked in the waning seconds.
The Hoyas had taken a 12-point lead midway through the second half on a barrage of three-pointers, and led by 12 points, 60-48, on free throws from Porter Jr. with 4:36 to play, but UConn used a 9-0 run and pulled to within 60-57 on free throws from Daniels with 2:30 to play. Smith-Rivera forced a steal with 1:16 left and scored on a layup to give GU a 62-57 lead with 1:11 left. Omar Calhoun responded with a layup and, after Starks missed the front end of a one-and-one, followed with a three-pointer with three seconds left, sending the game to overtime.
The Hoyas trailed by three points (22-19) at the break and fell behind by five after a layup from Shabazz Napier, but a jumper from Hopkins and a three-pointer from Starks tied the game at 24-all. That was the start of a 22-6 run over a span of 5:37 as Georgetown took a 41-30 lead on a three-pointer from Smith-Rivera at the 13:14 mark.
GU hit only one three-pointer in the first half, but connected on eight during the first 11:06 of the second half, including three-straight from Porter Jr., Starks and Smith-Rivera as the lead ballooned to 12 points, 53-41, with 8:54 left in the game.
Georgetown trailed by only three points, 22-19, at the break after shooting only 28.6 percent from the floor (6-of-21) and going more than 10 minutes without a field goal. After taking an early 5-0 lead on a three-pointer from Starks and free throws from Hopkins, UConn quickly tied the game on a layup from Boatright. A Lubick layup gave the Hoyas a 9-5 lead and a jumper from the junior forward at 12:02 made it 13-11 Hoyas.
A free throw from Porter Jr. kept GU in the lead, 14-13, but the Huskies went on a 9-2 run and took a 22-16 lead on a layup from Phillip Nolan with 2:37 to play. A layup from sophomore guard Jabril Trawick (Philadelphia, Pa./Abington Friends) with 56 seconds left - ending a string when the Hoyas went 12:06 without a field goal - cut the lead to three points, 22-19, and GU made two defensive stops in the final 34 seconds.
Georgetown is back home on Saturday, March 2, hosting Rutgers in a BIG EAST Conference matchup at Verizon Center. Tipoff is slated for 9 p.m. The game will be shown live on ESPNU and can be heard locally on ESPN 980 AM.