Jan. 17, 2015
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Georgetown 61, Butler 59
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WASHINGTON - Georgetown freshman forward Isaac Copeland (Raleigh, N.C./Brewster Academy [N.H.] hit a 3-pointer with 5.4 seconds left in the game and junior guard D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera (Indianapolis, Ind./North Central/Oak Hill) blocked the potential game-tying shot as the Hoyas held on to beat Butler, 61-59, in front of 14,281 fans at Verizon Center Saturday evening.
It was the third-straight win, and the fifth in the last six games, for the Hoyas, who improve to 12-5 overall and 4-2 in the BIG EAST Conference. Butler fell to 13-6 overall and 3-3 in the league.
Smith-Rivera scored 14 points, had three rebounds, three assists and three steals to lead four players in double figures for the Hoyas. Senior guard Jabril Trawick (Philadelphia, Pa./Abington Friends) had 10 points, three rebounds and six assists (eight points and five assists in the second half), senior center Joshua Smith (Kent, Wash./Kentwood/UCLA) had 10 points and four rebounds and Copeland finished with 10 points and six rebounds. Senior forward Mikael Hopkins (Hyattsville, Md./DeMatha) added eight points and eight rebounds.
The teams traded the lead back and forth in the waning stages of the game before Roosevelt Jones, who scored a game-high 28 points, hit a layup with 1:42 to play giving Butler a 57-56 lead. A jumper in the lane from Smith-Rivera gave GU a 58-57 lead with 38 seconds left, but Jones hit a driving layup with 12 seconds left to give the Bulldogs the lead.
After a timeout call from the Bulldogs, Trawick found Copeland on the left wing and the freshman calmly buried the 3-pointer, giving GU a 61-59 lead. Butler called timeout and after Jones drove to the basket from the right side, Smith-Rivera blocked his shot out of bounds as time expired, giving the Hoyas the thrilling win.
Georgetown took a six-point lead, 44-38, midway through the second half after falling behind by as much as 12 points in the first half, but Butler took a 48-47 lead on a jumper from Kelan Martin with 8:50 to play and it was neck-and-neck from there. A free throw from Andrew Chrabascz gave Butler a 51-49 lead before a 3-pointer from Smith-Rivera and a dunk from Trawick gave GU the lead back, 54-51, with 4:10 left.
Consecutive baskets from Jones gave Butler a 55-54 lead, but free throws from Smith-Rivera with 3:03 on the clock gave GU a 56-55 lead. Jones followed with a layup with 1:42 to play, setting up the dramatic finish.
After trailing by as many as 12 points in the opening half, Georgetown cut the lead to four points (31-27) at the break. A layup from Peak cut the lead to two points, 31-29, but a 3-pointer from Barlow and a layup from Roosevelt Jones pushed the lead back to seven points, 36-29. The Hoyas responded with a 10-0 spurt over 2:31 and took a 39-36 lead after a jumper in the lane from Copeland. The run was started by a Smith layup and followed by six-straight points from Trawick.
The GU lead was extended to six points, 44-38, after Copeland hit a 3-pointer with 12:42 left, but Butler used a 10-3 run and took a 48-47 lead on a jumper from Kelan Martin with 8:50 left to play in the game.
The Hoyas struggled in the first half and trailed virtually the entire opening 20 minutes, aside from a Smith layup in the opening seconds of the game. A jumper from Smith-Rivera tied the game at eight-all with 14:27 to play and a steal and dunk from senior guard Aaron Bowen (Jacksonville, Fla./QEA [N.C.]) cut a Butler lead to 15-13 with 10:40 to play.
Georgetown, however, went cold from the field after that, and did not hit a field for the next 8:56 as the Bulldogs used an extended 14-4 run and took a 29-17 lead after free throws from Kameron Woods with 2:37 left in the half. After Bowen missed a jumper in the lane, Hopkins was there for the top-in, ending the GU string. The Hoyas out-scored Butler, 10-2, over the final 2:27 and pulled to within four points, 31-27, after a Hopkins dunk with four seconds on the clock.