Thursday, December 12, 2013

Men's Basketball: GW 70 Boston University 60

Joe McDonald exploded for 20 points and 9 rebounds

From our friends at GW Athletics Communications...

Dominant Second Half Sends GW Men's Hoops to 9-1 with 70-60 Win Over BU

Savage and McDonald Lead Second-Half Surge, Combine for 42 Points and 17 Rebounds

GW men's basketball's backcourt trio of sophomores Kethan Savage and Joe McDonald and graduate student Maurice Creek combined for 52 points and 25 rebounds to propel the Colonials to a 70-60 victory over Boston University on Wednesday at the Charles E. Smith Center.

GW is now 9-1 - its best start since 2005-06 and tied for the eighth-best start in its 100 seasons of intercollegiate basketball - and has 10 days to prepare for its next game on Saturday, Dec. 21 against UMBC at the Smith Center. The victory moved the Colonials to 5-0 at home this season and was the sixth straight win at Smith Center.

Kethan Savage scored a career-high 22 points

Savage finished with a career-high 22 points, eight rebounds, four assists and two blocks, while McDonald added 20 points, a game-high nine rebounds and three steals. Creek chipped in 10 points and eight rebounds, and sophomore forward Kevin Larsen added 11 points, six rebounds, three assists and two blocks.

Savage and McDonald did a lot of their damage at the foul line where they combined to make 21-of-27 shots, helping the Colonials outscore the Terriers by 17 at the charity stripe.

Coach Mike Lonergan was on top of his game

GW found itself in a halftime deficit for just the third time this season, trailing 32-24 at the break after shooting just 35 percent and surrendering six first-half three-pointers to BU (6-4). The Colonials quickly pulled within a possession of the lead with a 6-0 run out of the locker room, but the Terriers responded to surge to their largest lead at 41-32 with 14:24 left.

Savage and McDonald took over from that point, combining for 26 points to help GW close on a 38-19 run for the comeback victory. McDonald scored five straight points then found senior Nemanja Mikic for a three-pointer to ignite the rally and climb within a possession at 43-40 with 12:09 remaining.

GW students take a "study break" 

Savage converted a pair of foul shots to pull even at 44-44, then McDonald made a free throw for GW's first lead of the game - 45-44 with 9:11 to play - since an early 2-0 advantage. Creek redeemed himself from a pair of missed technical free throws with a three-pointer and 16-foot jumper on consecutive trips to make it 50-44, and BU would get within a possession of the lead just once more.

In total in the second half, Savage had 18 points and five rebounds, while McDonald added 12 points and eight boards, to help will the Colonials to the come-from-behind victory. GW finished with a 39-32 rebounding edge, including 23-11 in the second half, and turned 16 total takeaways into 14 points, all in the final stanza.

Plenty to cheer about

The Colonials' backcourt out-dueled the Terriers' dynamic guard duo of D.J. Irving and Maurice Watson Jr., who combined for 35 points. Irving hit five 3-pointers en route to a game-high 23 points, and Watson Jr. finished with 12 points, six assists and four rebounds, but was limited to just 23 minutes due to foul trouble. Forward Dom Morris pitched in 10 points and eight boards.

GW is now 19-2 all-time against Boston University, including 11-0 at home and 10 wins in 11 meetings since 2000.

Click here for last night's box score.