[caption id="attachment_2449" align="alignright" width="497"] Hoyas Guard D'Vauntes Smith Rivera Drives Up the Court Leading the Hoyas with 15 points[/caption][gallery ids="2450,2451,2452,2453,2449"]The final score make it seem a lot closer than it was tonight at the Verizon Center, but the Golden Eagles certainly were not going to go down without a fight in the final minutes of this Big East match-up.
The Hoyas got a strong performance in the final two minutes led by D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera and Joshua Smith. It was Rivera's 15 points that led the way for the Hoyas.
“Well, if he can’t help us close and hang on, then we’re in trouble,” Hoyas Coach John Thompson III said of Smith-Rivera. “He did what he’s supposed to do at the end of games.”
Marquette made a few key shots in the final 30 seconds of the game, including two big three pointers after fouling the Hoyas at the other end of the court. The Golden Eagles had only two players in double figures. Carlino scored a game-high 16 but missed 8 of 14 shots, and redshirt sophomore center Luke Fischer had 13 points on 6-for-6 shooting.
The Hoyas (10-4, 2-1 Big East) were in the double bonus at that point, and Thompson made sure Smith-Rivera was the recipient of each inbounds pass. The junior guard made 5 of 6 free throws over the next 19 seconds, including a pair for a 62-53 lead with 15 seconds left that all but ensured Georgetown a sixth win in seven games. The Hoyas helped their cause by making 21 of 24 free throws in the second half.
“As everyone has seen in this league, every single night is going to be a tough night,” Thompson said. “Every half, every possession is important. That’s just how strong the league is. There’s no need to get too excited. Yippee, we’ve won two games. We’ve got to learn from it because this group still has room for growth.”