Georgetown guard Chris Wright fouls Notre Dame guard Tory Jackson after a Georgetown turnover. The Georgetown Hoyas fell apart against Big East foe, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, with a score of 78-64 at the Verizon Center on February 27, 2010. Yuchen Nie/DC Sports Box
WASHINGTON, D.C. – For the second time in four games, the Georgetown Hoyas (19-8, 9-7) have fallen to an unranked opponent and for the second straight game in a row, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish (19-10, 8-8) have beaten a nationally ranked opponent.
After beating No. 16 Pittsburgh earlier this week, Notre Dame completely dominated the court during Saturday’s matchup against Georgetown, and did so without their star player Luke Harongody who has missed his fourth game straight.
"It's a great win for us obviously,” said Notre Dame head coach Mike Brey. “I'm really proud of this group since we lost Luke Harangody. We really played like heck and tried to figure out the best way to play without him and I think we've embraced that certainly offensively.”
Without Harongody’s presence on the court, it was Ben Hansborough who stepped it up for the Irish scoring 21 points, scoring the first 10 points for the Irish to start the second half.
"I think that (Hansbrough) did take control. You can't play from behind all the time. We've come from behind in several games,” said Hoyas head coach John Thompson III. “That's not necessarily a script we want to follow, so we have to do a better job early. I think Hansbrough's plays at the start of the second half, in many ways, were deflating because we came out excited, ready to play and they got two layups and 2 or 3 three's and so that's what I said, that's what goods players do."
Notre Dame never faltered their lead from the 17:35 mark in the first half on and completely demolished Georgetown on the boards17-7 in the first half despite only having a four point lead heading into halftime.
But every time Georgetown would make attempt to spark a run, Notre Dame always found an answer to stop them and led by as many as 15 late into the second half.
“Today our defense really got us the win. I thought defensively we were really good, made big shots to hold them off,” said Brey. “We're just thrilled to be 8-8 in this league. We played like heck just to get to .500 in this league. It's a nice position to be in going into our last two home games."
Tim Abromaitis scored 19 points for the Irish with Carleton Scott adding 17 points with nine rebounds.
Georgetown, who has lost three of the past four games in a row, was led by sophomore center Greg Monroe with 15 points. Jason Clark and Hollis Thompson scored 12 points each and Chris Wright finished with 10.
Thompson started in the place of leading scorer Austin Freeman who was battling illness for the day. Freeman, scored just five points in his 23 minutes of play.
"There's no question. Freeman was not himself today,” said Brey. “He was sick and they are a very different basketball team. I'm a firm believer in survival of the fittest in this very cruel league but they are very different without Freeman."
Freeman will only have two days of rest to get better before the Hoyas head to No. 7 West Virgina on Monday before closing out Big East play and their regular season at home, Saturday March 6 against Cinncinati.