The struggles continue for St. John’s as they drop their third straight game in an 83-55 loss to Georgetown, giving the Hoyas their first win in Big East play.
St. John’s falls to 8-10, 2-3 in the Big East, while the Hoyas improve to 9-8, 1-4 in the league. And tonight’s performance will be remembered as Another Terrible Verizon Center Game.
St. John’s came out strong early on both ends. But despite getting off to a hot start, shooting 5-for-8 from the floor, St. John’s lead would only last for eight minutes.
Tariq Owens missed a dunk with just under 13 minutes left in the first half, resulting in a Georgetown dunk that would tie the game at 12. Shortly after, Owens missed another dunk and the Hoyas never trailed again.
The Red Storm took good care of the ball in the first half. However, they really struggled to find the bottom of the net, especially their backcourt. Shamorie Ponds and Marcus LoVett combined for 11 points in the first half on 2-for-9 shooting. At the half, despite the struggle of their two leading scorers, they only trailed 44-37.
Among the bright spots in the first half was Kassoum Yakwe, who had seven early points. However, foul trouble would hamper him, Malik Ellison and Bashir Ahmed in the first half. Things didn’t get any better in the second half.
As the offense struggled, the Red Storm resorted to one-on-one play. Georgetown opened the second half on a 17-2 run, watching the Red Storm’s defensive effort wilt and the offense devolve into simpler individual offensive plays. The Hoyas took a 61-39 lead to put the game out of reach.
The big issue for the Red Storm was the three-point shooting. They seem to live and die by the three as a team, and tonight they certainly did not live. They finished 5-for-30 from the deep and never gave themselves a chance. Their guards often settled for contested threes to try to get out of their respective slumps, all of which resulted in empty possessions.
Despite their big shot blocking numbers, the defense struggled to keep Georgetown out of the paint and off the free throw line. Their poor defense, in addition to the offensive dependence on LoVett and Ponds would lead to St. John’s third straight loss.
Shamorie Ponds finished with 12 points and 5 rebounds. Marcus LoVett finished with 10. The backcourt combined for just 2 assists and 8 turnovers. Bashir Ahmed had 10 points and Kassoum Yakwe had seven, all in the first half. ELlison also had seven before fouling out.
L. J. Peak had 16 for the Hoyas, leading four players in double figures.
St. John’s faces Villanova this Saturday at Madison Square Garden, trying to put this putrid performance behind them.