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No. 12 Georgetown Falls Short at Syracuse, 64-61
SYRACUSE, N.Y. - No. 12 Georgetown used a late rally and had the lead in overtime, but could not the tying basket and No. 2 Syracuse escaped with a 64-61 win over the Hoyas at the Carrier Dome on Wednesday night.
Freshman forward Otto Porter (Sikeston, Mo./Scott County Central) recorded his third double-double of the season with 14 points and 12 rebounds, while senior guard Jason Clark (Arlington, Va./Bishop O'Connell) added 12 points and junior forward Hollis Thompson (Los Angeles, Calif./Loyola) scored 10 points.
The Hoyas took a quick lead in the overtime on free throws from Porter, but the Orange took a 59-57 lead on baskets from C.J. Fair and Kris Joseph. Free throws from senior center Henry Sims (Baltimore, Md./Mount St. Joseph) and a baseline jumper from Porter gave the Hoyas a 61-59 lead. GU had the ball with a chance to push the lead, but Thompson was called for an offensive foul and Dion Waiters hit free throws to tie the game.
After a pair of missed shots from the Hoyas with just over a minute left, Kris Joseph hit a three-pointer with 24 seconds left to give the Orange the 64-61 lead.
The Hoyas trailed by four points, 35-31, early in the second half but took a 44-43 lead on a pair of free throws from Porter with 10:03 to play. Tied at 46-all on free throws from Sims with 7:57, Syracuse used an 8-2 run and took a 54-48 lead on a Kris Joseph three-pointer with 4:37 left in the game.
Clark, however, hit consecutive three-pointers, first with 4:21 left, and then with 1:36 left to pull the Hoyas to within 55-54. After a missed shot from Syracuse, freshman forward Greg Whittington (Columbia, Md./Oakland Mills) was fouled and he hit one of two free throws to tie the game with 1:00 on the clock. He tipped the missed shot and GU called timeout. A shot from Sims was blocked, but Syracuse could not get a clean shot off and the game went to overtime, the eighth time the team's played an overtime game.
Georgetown led 31-27 at the break, but Syracuse used an 8-0 run to start the second half and took a 35-31 lead on a three-pointer from Brandon Triche at the 17:56 mark.
After Clark and Sims picked up their third fouls, respectively, Head Coach John Thompson III went to a lineup featuring Thompson and four freshmen - Mikael Hopkins (Hyattsville, Md./DeMatha), Porter, Jabril Trawick (Philadelphia, Pa./Abington Friends) and Whittington - and they responded, using an 11-5 run to take a 42-40 lead on a baseline jumper from Porter. During the run, Porter, Hopkins and Trawick each scored baskets and GU took a 38-37 lead on one of two free throws from sophomore forward Nate Lubick (Southborough, Mass./St. Marks).
Despite only shooting 39.4 percent from the floor, the Hoyas opened a four-point lead, 31-27, at the break, with balanced scoring. Thompson led the way with eight points and seven different played scored at least two points.
It was a back-and-forth first half with six ties and seven lead changes. Syracuse's largest lead was only two points on a couple of occasions in the opening 20 minutes. After leading 10-8 on a jumper from Dion Waiters, the Hoyas used a 9-2 run over 3:01 and took a 17-12 lead on a Starks layup.
The lead was five points, 20-15, after a three-pointer from Starks with 7:59 left, but the Orange tied the game at 20-all on a dunk from Fab Melo and took a 21-20 lead on a free throw from C.J. Fair. GU then used a 9-2 run over 3:18, started by a Thompson three, and opened a 29-23 lead on a Clark layup with 1:57 left. Free throws from freshman forward Greg Whittington (Columbia, Md./Oakland Mills) gave Georgetown a 31-27 lead at the break.
Georgetown is back in action again this weekend at home, hosting long-time BIG EAST rival St. John's on Sunday, Feb. 12 at Verizon Center. Tipoff for the game, which will be shown live on ESPN, is slated for 1 p.m., with Bob Wischusen and Fran Fraschilla calling the game. Locally, fans can tune in to ESPN 980 AM for the radio call from Rich Chvotkin.