Hoyas finish exams, test offensive execution versus Elon

Hoyas finish exams, test offensive execution versus Elon
December 17, 2013, 9:00 am
Share This Post

Georgetown Hoyas head coach John Thompson III speaks with guard Markel Starks (5) during the second half against the Indiana Hoosiers at the Legends Classic Championship at Barclays Center.

(Debby Wong-US PRESSWIRE)

The last time we saw the Hoyas, they fended off Colgate 61-55 back on Dec. 7. Now, a win is a win and in this case it was Georgetown's fourth straight. However, coach John Thompson III showed displeasure with his team's performance by not bringing any players into the postgame media session.

"I don't think they played well enough to earn the right to come talk to you guys," Thompson said after his team shot 1 of 15 from beyond the 3-point arc and couldn't shake the Patriot League program until the final minutes.

Since then the Hoyas (6-2) have been practicing and fine tuning the plans on both ends of the court heading into Tuesday's matchup against Elon (7 p.m., CBSSN), the fourth and final game of the current homestand. Georgetown then travels to play at Kansas on Saturday.

Well, they've been practicing in and around challenging personal schedules with players prepping for and taking finals.

"The past 10 days have been difficult because they've been in exams," Thompson said on Monday as he and players with the media at McDonough Arena. "I think today was the first day that everybody was in practice because of exams and study groups and papers."

Starting with the moments after the previous win and over the subsequent days, the coach had his own lesson plan for the players. Based on Nate Lubick's response when asked what the coach emphasized, offensive execution made the list.

"We weren't good. We didn't play well," the senior forward and Georgetown's leading rebounder said. "It was a bad win as [Coach Thompson] says sometimes. We didn't execute. We got out of our offense. We kind of let things they were doing, adjustments they were making dictate the way we were playing offense. That is something that we never do and that we can't do."

The Hoyas have a pair of 20-point wins on the homestand thanks largely to second half routs. They proved stout defensively in all three victories and currently rank second nationally in field goal percentage defense. However, Georgetown has been sluggish offensively at points in the first half of all three games.

Against Lipscomb and Colgate, the Hoyas entered halftime with a one and six point lead respectively. Against High Point, Georgetown scored seven points over the final 10:53 of the first half, as its opponent.

"Teams are always going to have specific ways that they play us on the offensive end," said Lubick, who scored a season-high 10 points against Colgate. "For the most part and I think specifically last year we were always really good about not letting people dictate the way we play. [Colgate] did that. They were getting too many offensive rebounds. We were not making the hustle plays or executing on the offensive end."

The Phoenix (5-5) aren't a major threat on the offensive glass, but rank ninth nationally in 3-point field goal percentage and have a legitimate interior threat in 6-foot-10 Lucas Troutman (16.0 ppg).

"The big kid inside is different," Thompson said of Elon's leading scorer. "He's crafty with the ball."

This stretch of this season is always different for the Hoyas compared to the other weeks and months. There are the finals, there is the extended break between games. Whether the competitive down time proved helpful for the upcoming contest will be revealed on Tuesday. Helpful or not, having a period without games was certainly a necessity for those cramming for subjects like Management Science.

Lubick cracked, "We were in exams so thank god for me."

Notes: Former Hoya Greg Whttington revealed this week that he would transfer to Rutgers. The junior forward was dismissed from the Georgetown program on November 30.