first_img Published on March 9, 2013 at 2:17 pm Contact Ryne: [email protected] WASHINGTON — The display of raw emotion marked the end of the game.Georgetown guards D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera and Markel Starks fittingly converged at the Big East Conference logo in the paint during a media timeout with 7:08 remaining. Smith-Rivera – whose jumper from the right wing 17 seconds earlier pushed the Hoyas’ lead over Syracuse to 21 – finally let loose with an emphatic fist pump and scream. And Starks, who drilled five 3-pointers to that point, soaked it all in before flashing a wide smile and sharing a chest bump and laugh with his backcourt mate.The farewell party for the Hoyas’ longtime Big East rival could start early.Chants of “ACC” rained down on the court, taunting the Orange’s defection to the Atlantic Coast Conference. Legendary Georgetown center Patrick Ewing waved to the Verizon Center crowd as he was honored for his distinguished career, only eliciting louder roars. There may have been seven minutes to play, but it was clear the Hoyas’ thrashing was complete.No. 5 Georgetown blasted No. 17 Syracuse 61-39 in the final regular-season matchup between the two as Big East rivals on Saturday. The Orange (23-8, 11-7 Big East) turned in its worst performance of the season and one of its worst in the heated rivalry, scoring its lowest total of points in a game since 1962 thanks to Georgetown’s suffocating defense. Smith-Rivera and Starks combined to score 34 points to lead the charge for the Hoyas (24-5, 14-4), much to the dismay of Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim, who said his only focus defensively was to take away any open looks for their guards.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“We did not get that message through,” Boeheim said. “It wasn’t that we were someplace and we didn’t know where they were. We were there. We just let them get set and shoot the ball.”They made Syracuse pay, too. Starks finished with 19 points on five 3-pointers, while Smith-Rivera netted 15 points on three 3s. The tandem benefited from plenty of open looks as Michael Carter-Williams and the Orange keyed on Georgetown superstar Otto Porter Jr., who torched them for 33 points at the Carrier Dome two weeks ago.Porter didn’t attempt a shot until the 7:46 mark of the first half, and he didn’t score until sinking a pair of free throws with 24 seconds left in the half. But Starks and Smith-Rivera provided the answer in the scoring column with 19 points at the break.Porter transformed from scorer to facilitator, finding his teammates for open shots and finishing with a game-high seven assists. It’s why John Thompson III was hardly concerned with Porter’s touches early on.“What was the final score?” Thompson III said with a laugh. “They know we wanted to get it to him in the middle and they did a very good job of not letting us do that.”But as Thompson III pointed out, it didn’t matter. Georgetown outclassed Syracuse in every facet of the game.Its physical and relentless defense, spearheaded by Starks on the perimeter, frustrated the Orange all day. Carter-Williams was the lone player who had any success getting to the rim. The point guard accounted for eight of SU’s 15 field goals and finished with 17 points.It all resulted in Syracuse’s lowest halftime scoring output all season. And in the historically bad output by game’s end.As the Orange scuffled and struggled to find the basket, Starks and Smith-Rivera offered dagger after dagger from the perimeter within Georgetown’s efficient half-court offense.“They was driving the baseline, they was getting us rotated, making our defense move,” SU guard Brandon Triche said. “So a lot of the shots they was getting pretty open and their feet were set. They did a good job moving the ball.”Every time the Hoyas moved the ball with precision, Syracuse lost track of the shooters despite Boeheim’s pregame focus.It’s what happened on Smith-Rivera’s jumper from the right wing, which came off a kickout from Porter at the free-throw line. The Hoyas guard then ran down the court, both arms out gliding in celebration. James Southerland’s attempt from 3 went long and Smith-Rivera gave his fist pump heading into the timeout.The party began. The fans chants didn’t stop for the final seven minutes, switching from chants of “ACC” to “Hey, Hey, Hey, Goodbye” and finally to “Big East” to salute the Hoyas, who locked up the conference regular-season title with the win.The “Big East” chants continued until the buzzer when the fans rushed the court. Syracuse’s players walked dejectedly to the locker room. And the public address announcer urged fans to stick around for the presentation of the Big East championship trophy – there was more celebrating to do.The game, which had been long over, was simple. Syracuse failed to execute its game plan while Georgetown was flawless.“We were prepared for this game,” Thompson III said. “Our guys knew what it meant and I knew they would come to play.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *