– by Adesina O. Koiki
A Lot of Sports Talk editor-in-chief
WASHINGTON — It took a few wake-up calls, but Georgetown got its act together just in time to come away with another big win before its biggest game of the season.
Guard James Akinjo led the Hoyas with 23 points, including 10 in the final five minutes of the game, as Georgetown defeated Xavier 80-73 at Capital One Arena on Thursday to win its second straight contest. In the final 4:56 of the contest, Akinjo made two three-pointers and four free throws as the Hoyas pulled away with a closing 16-7 run.
Forward Josh LeBlanc added 17 points for the Hoyas (14-7, 4-4), including a layup inside to break a 9-0 Xavier run to start the game. Center Jessie Govan, the team’s leading scorer coming into the game, added 12 points, six rebounds and three blocked shots. Freshman guard Mac McClung had 11 points and five assists while not committing a turnover.
Xavier (11-11, 3-6) lost its fourth consecutive game, with all of the games decided by 10 points or fewer and three decided by seven or fewer. Naji Marshall led the Musketeers with 16 points while Paul Scruggs had 15 points and seven rebounds. Point guard Quentin Goodin had 14 points, four rebounds and four assists coming off the bench.
Georgetown capitalized on the 14 turnovers committed by the Musketeers, scoring 20 points off of those turnovers. After shooting just 41 percent from the field in the first half, the Hoyas made 17 of their 29 field goal attempts (59 percent) in the second half, including eight of their 12 three-point attempts.
The Hoyas now travel to Philadelphia to take on No. 14 Villanova, the Big East’s lone undefeated team in conference play, on Sunday afternoon.
*Editor’s note: Above the byline is the photo gallery from Thursday evening’s game, with all photos taken by DC-Area photographer Yusuf Abdullah. After clicking on the first photo to enlarge the picture, make sure to press the left and right arrow buttons to scroll through the rest of the pictures. There are currently nine pictures in total.