Game Notes & Preview: Providence 16-6 (6-3) at Georgetown 15-6 (7-3) 2/4/15

Where: Verizon Center – Washington, DC

When: 9:00 PM

How: CBS Sports Network (Andrew Catalan & Steve Lappas with Evan Washburn on sideline)/WEEI 103.7 FM and Friars.com (John Rooke and Joe Hassett)/FriarTV

Game Notes

  • This will mark the 66th meeting all-time between Providence and Georgetown. The series is led by the Hoyas, 44-21. The series favors the Hoyas, 23-4, when played in Washington DC. Providence went 1-1 against Georgetown last season and are 1-0 against the Hoyas this season. The Friars beat Georgetown, 60-57, at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center on January 10th. That game required overtime. The last time Providence won at Georgetown was March 5, 2005.
  • Georgetown welcomes Providence to the Verizon Center following a 67-40 defeat in Omaha against Creighton. The Hoyas are led in scoring by junior guard D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera, who averages 15.6 points/game. DSR is 5th in the Big East in scoring behind LaDontae Henton, who averages 20.4 points/game. The Hoyas are led in rebounding by senior Josh Smith, who averages 6.7 rebounds/game. Senior Mikael Hopkins is 4th in the Big East in blocks/game at 1.86 while Carson Desrosiers is 2nd in that category in the league with 3.05 blocks/game
  • Providence was 1-1 last week with their win coming in a re-scheduled home game against DePaul. Kris Dunn registered his first career triple-double in the 83-72 win. Dunn also scored a career high 27 points while the Friars had 5 players score in double figures for the first time this season. The loss came at Madison Square Garden at the hands of St. John’s, 75-66. The Red Storm swept the regular season series between the two teams with that win.
  • Henton is tied with Marvin Barnes for 6th place on the all-time points scored list at Providence College with 1,839 career points. While Henton has done a lot of moving up this list recently it will probably be a little while until he gets to Jamel Thomas and the 5th spot. Thomas scored 1,971 career points making Henton 132 behind entering the Georgetown game. Desrosiers is 8th on the all-time blocked shots list at Providence College with 149 blocks through 56 career games as a Friar. Desrosiers is now 6 blocks behind Randall Hanke for 7th place in school history.
  • The line opened with Providence as a 6 point underdog. The total is 131.

Kenpom InstaGamePrep™

Note: Stats include games through February 3rd vs D-1 teams only

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Game Preview

Providence continues their tough 4 game stretch with their second straight road contest. The Friars will look to sweep Georgetown this season after defeating the Hoyas, 60-57, in overtime at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center on January 10th. Georgetown has won 5 out of 6 since that loss at Providence and the Hoyas cracked the top 25 last week and were ranked 24th in both polls this week. The game in Providence was certainly not one with offensive firepower. The two teams combined to shoot 39/114 (35%) from the field and both teams were under 25% from beyond the arc.

The big scoring advantages in the game for Providence came at the free throw line and points off turnovers. The Friars were 21/30 (70%) from the line against Georgetown’s 11/20 (55%) and Kris Dunn and company were able to score 23 points off Georgetown’s 15 turnovers. The Hoyas only managed 8 points off Providence’s 8 turnovers. If not for a freak deflection to Josh Smith to score the game-tying bucket in the closing seconds of regulation the Friars would have won the game in regulation having controlled the game most the day.

Providence was able to slow down D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera in the first half with their zone forcing Georgetown to be much more passive on offense than they wanted to be. The Friars will again try to slow down DSR and my guess is the zone will be heavily used again. Josh Smith battled foul trouble for much of the last game but managed to make some key plays. Carson Desrosiers will have his hands full against Smith down low.

For Providence to be successful LaDontae Henton will have get himself going again after struggling against St. John’s to the tune of 2/14 from the field and 13 points. Kris Dunn appeared to be trying to do too much against the Red Storm and St. John’s clamped down on his driving ability by clogging the lane. That’s something Georgetown has the ability to do with their size. I’d much rather see Kris Dunn get back to his 7-10 assists than 25+ points.

In a game that figures to be low scoring the Friars will need to be efficient on offense and probably create opportunities with their defense as they did the last time these teams faced off. I’m concerned that they are missing open shots which does not bode well for road wins. This game will be a gritty Big East battle just like the game in Providence and I generally favor the home team in games like that.

Prediction: Providence 58 Georgetown 63

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