GW 78-Maryland 70

Originally uploaded by squidpants.
So I went to the BB&T Classic Monday at the MCI Center, where #19/21 GW beat #17/20 Maryland. It was pretty nervewracking and great.

The game was the first time since 1955 that the teams had played each other while both ranked in the top 25. It was a pretty big win, even bigger because GW beat Maryland last year in the same tournament, thus pretty much cementing the fact that GW is the best team in the area lately. Despite being dismantled last year, Maryland fans kept saying it was a fluke, a bad game, etc. After the game, Maryland coach Gary Williams, classy as always, came up with a laundry list of reasons why they lost, none of which had anything to do with GW beating them at their own game - he said they turned it over to much, he didn't prepare the team adequately, complained that his team had to play Minnesota (boo hoo - MN lost to Gardner-Webb earlier) and that his team played in Hawaii awhile ago and was tired. Pretty lame.The crowd was pretty heavily pro-Maryland, I'd say 3:1 or so, although GW's student section was bigger, which was odd.

I knew it was going to be a good night, because I saw the guy I call the Shaw Samurai hanging out at the Gallery Place-Chinatown Metro while I was waiting for my pal to show up. We went to an owl-themed restaurant before the game, which was terrible, then walked over to the MCI Center in time to miss the tip-off. Our seats in the first half were ok, pretty much right behind the basket on the floor level, so the other basket was pretty small. I was pretty rowdy I guess in the first half, yelling and making fun of bad Maryland passes and cheers and stuff. I was decidely more calm in the second half, I guess because the game was tight.

It was pretty sloppy and rough in the first half, lots of called and uncalled hard fouls, bad passes, missed alley-oops, etc, but GW had a slight lead at halftime, despite pretty bad shooting, sub 30%. We moved to much better seats second half, on the side about 6 rows back from the court, near the GW basket. They were prety sweet. In the second half GW gradually pulled away, despite 5 key guys playing with 4 fouls - Pops Mensah-Bonsu (9 pts, 8 reb) and JR Pinnock (19 pts, 8 reb), both of whom fouled out, Mike Hall (14 pts, 12 reb), Omar Williams and Carl Elliott. Most of the guys played great (including sophomore Maureece Rice, who scored 19), but I was particularly impressed with Elliott, the point guard. He played good defense, scored 11, and at one point after a big crash into a Maryland player, ended up hitting the floor head first. He was on the ground for a long time, maybe 5 minutes, and when he got up there was a pool of blood. He went to bench, got stitches, and came back soon after with a big bandaid on his head and played the rest of the game, hitting the key free throws to finish the game out. (The Hatchet has a photo of the gash in its slideshow.) And at the end of the game, Carl was dribbling the clock out, my little group of GW fans were cheering and pointing at him and he was looking back at me, both of us like "Yeah, we did it." Corny I know, but it was pretty awesome.

It was a pretty sweet win though, GW played great, scoring when they needed to, getting stops on defense, shrugging off some terrible calls by the refs. At one point GW was up by nine, then Chris McCray from Maryland hit 3 three-pointers in a row in about 40 seconds, tying it up. But GW just kept going, got a few baskets in a row and some defensive stops, and led the rest of the game.

The crowd was pretty well-behaved, which was good, besides a jerk in a suit behind me. The guy was probably in his 50s or 60s, and looked like a respectable doctor of professor, not a jerky-looking guy. When we'd do something awesome, like an alley-oop or a three point play, I'd stand up and cheer, briefly, which is what normal fans do at sporting events. I stood a handful of times in the second half, probably 2 or 3, but I'd always sit down right afterwards, since I don't want to block peoples' view (as some Maryland dudes were doing in front of me, during free throws and everything else.) After a foul where we still scored, when action stopped, I was standing and clapping, and the guy behind me yelled "sit your ass down!" I turned around and said, "man, nothing is happening!" which it wasn't, players were just milling around, I think it was a TV time out or something. He kept saying "sit your stupid ass down, you're annoying me" and stuff like that, and I was saying "man, you're being a complete dick," which was true. I kept pointing out nothing was going on, but he was not convinced, it was ridiculous. His friend was kind of amused and said "hey, let's just agree, he's a dick, you're annoying," which I said sure, that's fine, but the other dude kept going "sit your ass down, sit your ass down" over and over. I sat down furious, but about a minute later him and his pal left, since Maryland was about to lose. So I made sure to wave goodbye and have a nice day sir and things of that nature. It's funny what a game will do to grown people (me included, as I was goading him).

Here's a few good articles on the game:
Post column by Mike Wise about GW and the BB&T - pretty sweet. My fav quote: "With the Terps experiencing growing pains and Georgetown content to fly cross-country rather than to drive across town, the Colonials are making their case, one dunk on Maryland at a time."
Post game article
Fox Sports article about Pops and the team by Yoni Cohen of yocohoops.com. Pretty good analysis.
GW Hatchet article

1 comment:

Beth said...

you can never go wrong when the samuri is spotted....

oh and i mailed it