Word on the Street: Georgetown-Kansas recap

Word on the Street: Georgetown-Kansas recap
November 22, 2011, 8:50 am
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By Benjamin Standig
CSNwashington.comSome quick and very late night thoughts following Georgetown's 67-63 loss to No. 14 Kansas in the opening round of the Maui Invitational...Considering the two opening winswere borderline walkovers, in many waysMonday's game was Georgetown's opener.Not talking moral victories, but the Hoyas faithful should be encouraged by what they witnessed from the young squad. Every time the Jayhawks attempted to pull away, the Hoyas reeled them back in with key baskets and energetic plays. Yes, there were ill-timed miscues, stretches of sluggish half court offense and inattentive moments around the defensive rim, but the kids were not intimidated.Call itaquality effort overall, not that Hoyas coach John Thompson necessarily saw it that way after his inexperienced squad dropped its first game of the season."You're going to play against good teams.They're going to do a lot of things to you that you can't do anything about,"Georgetown's coach said after the loss. "But there are a few things that we can control. We're not going to be singing this young team song all year.These guys are ready to play."After watching the Hoyas play a methodical, under-the-rim brand of basketball the past two seasons, the energy generated by this athletic, up-tempo crew is palpable. Georgetown had no issue running with Kansas while using its speed and length to create opportunities on both ends of the court. More time together will increase efficiency.The Hoyas 3-pointer shooting peaked before halftime, including Otto Porter's bomb before the buzzer, butdropped off a cliff in the second half (2 of 10). Combined, it amounted to 29.2 percent (7 of 24) overall. Hollis Thompson's 2-of-5 looks off in comparison to the 7-of-9 he shot during the first two game,s but Kansas effectively took away his looks after halftime.Credit the Jayhawks with disruptingthe "Princeton" part of the offensive flow. The first true backdoor conversion did not come until the final minutes of the game and the Hoyas finished with only six assists.Defensively the Hoyas length caused problems for the Jayhawks perimeter game, but Kansas consistently penetrated or threw over the top for successful lobs, many to their star forward Thomas Robinson, who had at least five dunks on his own."We wantedRobinson to take 12, 15 foot jump shots," Thompson III said. "Now their guards did a very good job of getting into the meat of our defense, and our bigs probably stepped up a little bit too much and ended up with what feels like 14 dunks."No intimidator on the Hoyas back line, but also not many teams have a dominant finisher like Robinson. Last season Austin Freeman and Chris Wright often took big shots, whether that meantlate in games, to change momentum or end a scoring drought. Georgetown was searching for their replacement when they went over eight minutes during the second halfwithouta basket. Jason Clark stepped up in the final minutes, but primarily in open court situations. Hoyas still looking for player they can design plays, at least until Hollis Thompson becomes that guy.After shying away from the floor leader role last season when Wright went down with his injury, Clark appears much more comfortable running the offense or, more specifically, being the primary decision maker. That is a significant factor considering the all-court potential when the Hoyas use the four 6-8 playersone guard lineup. Work remains.Porter continues his stat-stuffing ways. After leading the Hoyas in rebounds against Savannah State and assists against UNC Greenboro, the poised freshman matched Thompson and Clark with two 3-point field goals. Fellow frosh Greg Whittington had a rougher outing, missing five of six attempts.After going deep with his bench during the first two blowouts,John Thompson III primarily used a seven-man rotation with Mikael Hopkins and Jabril Trawick receiving only six and three minutes of scoreless action respectively. After making his season debut against UNCG, freshman center Tyler Adams didnot play against Kansas.Next up, upset-minded Chaminade. Tuesday's tip-off, 4:30pm M Street time. Quick turnaround.Breakfast BuffetRedskins offensive revival, at least for one game(O'Halloran -CSNwashington)Some think Redskins fans rooting for or at least not getting upset by losses is nutty. (Snider - Washington Examiner)...Personally, I call it rationale. Redskins playoff dreams over before Turkey Day(Daly - Washington Times)Caps. Finally. Win. (Gormley - CSNwashington)Ryan Pearson powers George Mason past Brown (Washington Examiner)Shocker, Tony Taylor leads the way as George Washington motors past Detroit (Associated Press)