Xavier (12-2, 2-0 Big East) junior guard Trevon Bluiett is fourth in the Big East in scoring with 19.2 points per game. In the Musketeers thrilling 81-76 win over Georgetown (8-6, 0-2 in the Big East) on Saturday, Bluiett wasn’t the bright spot in his team’s offense. Guards Edmond Sumner and J.P. Macura were the ones to step up for the Musketeers.
“We know Trevon is our leading scorer and our best scorer,” Sumner, who finished with a career high 28 points, said. “We have a well-rounded team and we are very versatile, so anyone can step up. Me and J.P. had to step up because Trevon was having an off day.”
Sumner also added eight rebounds and six assists. Macura finished with 23 points (6-15 FG) and six rebounds.
It was a back and forth game that featured 13 ties and 16 lead changes. Even though the Hoyas came into the matchup as underdogs, they kept up with Xavier. The Hoyas were down 30-24 with 5:10 left in the first half before they went on a 7-0 run to take a one point lead. Georgetown went into the half with a 38-36 advantage.
Georgetown’s junior guard LJ Peak was causing problems for the Musketeers as he was attacking and finishing at the rim. Peak had 16 points in the first half and finished the game with 21 points.
The Hoyas created a little cushion at the beginning of the second half, going up 45-39. Xavier started creeping back with the help from Sumner and Mascura. The Musketeers ability to get to the hoop and draw fouls was another reason they were able to make a comeback.
Xavier’s Kaiser Gates converted a lay-up to tie the game at 49 with 13:57 left in the game. Gates nailed a three pointer right after to give his team the lead. It didn’t last long as center Jessie Govan hit a three-point basket to put Georgetown up. That was Govan’s only basket.
Momentum shifted in Xavier’s favor during the final five minutes of the game. Xavier’s Malcolm Bernard nailed a wide open three pointer to take a 70-64 lead. Mascura made two free throws on the Musketeers next possession to go up 72-64.
Georgetown’s leading scorer Rodney Pryor, who finished with 20 points and seven rebounds, made a three pointer to cut Xavier’s lead down to five. A few minutes later, Pryor gets to the rim for a slam to cut the deficit to 76-74 with 52 seconds left.
Sumner went 1-2 from the free throw line to put Xavier up 77-74. Pryor got the ball in his hands once again, but he missed the potential game tying three pointer.
Georgetown’s Jonathan Mulmore made a free throw to make it a 79-76 game with five seconds left. He missed the second free throw and the ball went out-of-bounds. The referees thought an Xavier player tipped the ball out. After they reviewed the play, Xavier took over on offense and the Hoyas were out of time.
Xavier went to the free throw line 38 times and shot 76 percent. Sumner lived at the free throw line, shooting 14-17.
“I don’t think he [Sumner] was more aggressive,” Hoyas head coach John Thompson III said. “He did a good job at drawing fouls and getting to the line.”
Xavier’s defense limited Peak’s production in the second half as the team kept him from getting to the basket. It forced Peak to start finding his teammates and giving them the ball.
“In the second half, everyone shut him [Peak] down whenever he got to the lane,” Thompson III said. “He did a good job at not forcing things and playing plays and finding open guys.”
Georgetown will be back in action on Wednesday when they face Providence.