In the last couple of game the Hoyas have gone down to the wire and tonight was no different as the Hoyas had to take Syracuse to overtime to maintain their lead in the Big East Conference. They owe a lot of the victory tonight to Jeremiah Rivers as he put a stop on Cuse leading scorer tonight, Jonny Flynn.
Flynn who dominated during regulation with 24 points had one more look at the basket after he saw Georgetown dissolve seven-point lead. It was Rivers who scored just 4 points made the final big play when he forced Flynn to miss a tough 3-pointer at the overtime buzzer of the Hoyas’ 64-62 victory.
“We wanted to see if Jeremiah could do what he had done the whole second part of the game, stay in front of him, make him take a tough shot,” Georgetown coach John Thompson III said. “You can’t stop him from getting shots off, you just have to make it a tough shot, and we made it a tough shot.”
The Hoyas opened a 35-24 advantage late in the first half, after a stretch in which seniors Tyler Crawford and Jonathan Wallace made three straight three-pointers, and Hibbert (15 points, nine rebounds) made a strong move through a double-team to score. But Flynn and Greene brought the Orange back.
Hibbert had a lot of help from the perimeter including Wallace’s 15 points and Jesse Sapp’s 11 points. The totals by the starters certainly did not look impressive on the stat sheet. The Hoyas shot just 35 percent in the second half and were outrebounded 43-33 and still found a way to make Cuse battle to the end.
“We expect to win close games,” Thompson said. “We’ve done it a lot over the years, and when we get in what many would perceive to be tight situations I don’t think we tense up too much. I think we realize at that point is when we have to focus and execute.”
Syracuse had its biggest lead at 58-51 and really could not hold the Hoyas after that. After a couple missed three pointers by Sapp he nailed one from the right side cutting the Georgetown deficit to 60-58. Then Flynn, who was being closely guarded by Rivers, lost control of the ball and freshman Austin Freeman scooped it up and sent it ahead to Sapp, whose lay up tied the score at 60 with 1:14 to play.
In the overtime the Hoyas dominated and the Cuse looked very out of sync offensively and the final shot by Flynn fell short and the Hoyas retained their conference lead and improved to 5-1 overall in the Big East