For a time, it looked like Maurice Harkless was getting his groove back, finding spaces to work and get shots up (or draw free throw attempts). He spun, he made mid-range jumpers, he drew fouls on made shots.
Unfortunately, he fouled out with 5:15 left in the game.
Once again, foul trouble hampered an effectve St. John's player, and the rest of the team couldn't pick up the slack. The Red Storm lost 69-49 to the #11 Hoyas, who got 20 points from Hollis Thompson (on 5-9 shooting from outside the arc, 7-13 overall) and contributions from Jason Clark (15 points, 8 total rebounds, 8 assists) and Otto Porter (13 points, 4 steals, 5 offensive rebounds, 5 D-rebounds, pesky defense at the top of the zone).
St. John's shot 0-10 from beyond the arc and 40% inside. The Storm held the Hoyas in check in the first half, only trailing 25-19, but the second half got away from them as the team from Washington shot better and got numerous attempts from the line.
The Georgetown Hoyas improve to 14-3, 4-2 Big East with the 20-point win over St. John's at the Garden. The Red Storm fall to 8-9 on the season - the first time they have been under the .500 mark - and 2-4 in the league. They face South Florida at the St. Pete Times Forum in Tampa on Wednesday.
Takeaways for the Red Storm, below the fold.
Harkless came alive. Though he had four turnovers, Harkless was the most effective player for the Red Storm. He had much of his array of shots on display, going 9-16 from the field, earning 6 foul shots, and grabbing 6 offensive rebounds to keep the Red Storm in scoring opportunities. He had a block and 5 defensive rebounds (a double-double, 21 points/ 11 boards).
Harrison struggled. D`Angelo Harrison, trying to spark the team, couldn't find the range. He shot 1-12, 0-3 from beyond the arc with 4 turnovers. He missed deep shots, he missed close shots, he passed the ball directly into the chest of a Hoya twice in transition... he just had a bad, reckless day. He did have 3 steals and ran the point for stretches.
The team struggled against the height and pressure of the Hoyas. Georgetown doesn't pressure incessantly, but the they did trap and put length at the top of the key, stymying the Johnnies into two shot clock violations, a trio of desperation heaves, and 40.5% shooting inside the arc. The Storm turned the ball over on 21.5% of their possessions, and the Hoyas grabbed 53% of their missed shots (which is a LOT).
Pointer and Garrett are coming along nicely. Both Sir`Dominic Pointer and Amir Garrett have been defensive role players and offensive non-factors. Neither should be taking over games - right now, that's for Harrison and Harkless - but both contributed with a combined 19 points, 6 rebounds (3 offensive), 2 blocks, 5 of the team's 9 steals, and 9-11 shooting from the free throw line. They defended at the top of the zone while Phil Greene sat for stretches. And they only contributed 2 of the team's 13 turnovers.
Per Jon Rothstein on Twitter, a quote from Mike Dunlap on Pointer: "He's more comfortable. He's taken advantage of the minutes he's getting. He reminds me of Eduardo Najera with his energy."
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