Georgetown came away with a road win in one of the nation’s toughest venues in its last game. It figures to have an even easier time at home against a team still looking for its first Big East victory.
The 12th-ranked Hoyas go for their ninth straight home victory over Rutgers on Saturday while trying to send the Scarlet Knights to their eighth consecutive loss.
Georgetown (14-3, 5-2) played its second straight game against a ranked opponent on the road Wednesday. However, after losing 82-77 at No. 4 Villanova on Sunday, it was able to come away with much better results against No. 9 Pittsburgh, winning 74-66. The victory snapped the Panthers’ 31-game home winning streak.
After shooting 39.3 percent against the Wildcats, the Hoyas were 26 of 56 (46.4 percent) from the field against Pitt. Georgetown was tied at the half, a huge improvement after it trailed by 15 heading into the break in two of its previous three games.
Chris Wright helped Georgetown avoid back-to-back losses for the first time this season, scoring 27 points, including 15 in the second half. Wright, the team’s second-leading scorer at 15.0 per game, had been held to seven against Villanova.
“Chris made a lot of plays for us,” coach John Thompson III said. “I said this after our last five games … but different guys step up on each night. They do a terrific job of sharing and stepping up when they need to. Chris didn’t do anything we haven’t seen him do in practice. We were just able to spread it around.”
Winners of eight of nine at home this season, the Hoyas have shot 51.3 percent during a four-game win streak there.
Georgetown has played especially well against Rutgers (9-9, 0-6), winning seven in a row overall and eight straight at home. The Knights have shot 36.3 percent in their last eight road games against the Hoyas and haven’t scored more than 57 points in the last four.
Rutgers will be looking to end a seven-game overall losing streak, a stretch that includes four losses to ranked opponents. The Knights fell 94-68 to Villanova on Wednesday, trailing almost the entire way and by double digits after the first 10 minutes.
Freshman Dane Miller scored a career-high 26 points - 22 in the second half - while finishing with eight rebounds, six assists, two steals and two blocked shots. Rutgers, however, was outrebounded 52-28
“They just were tougher than us,” said Hamady Ndiaye, who added 12 points. “That’s about it, I think. The toughness. They brought it to a whole different level and we didn’t bring it.”
Leading scorer Mike Rosario, who is averaging 15.3 points, will look to bounce back after going 1 of 8 from the field to finish with three points against the Wildcats. He scored 20 points in his only meeting against Georgetown last season.
Rutgers is the only remaining Big East team without a win in conference play after DePaul’s victory against Marquette earlier this week. The Knights have dropped 31 of their last 34 conference games and haven’t won one on the road since a 64-61 victory at Seton Hall on March 9, 2008.