Marquette gets one its way
Jimmy Butler made two free throws with 7.5 seconds left and the Golden Eagles won a tight game for the first time this season, upsetting No. 12 Georgetown, 62-59, Wednesday night.
Chris Wright missed a 3-pointer that would have tied it with 1 second left for the Hoyas (11-2, 2-1).
Marquette (10-5, 1-2) lost two games in the closing seconds to Top 10 teams in the past 10 days and was 0-4 in games decided by four points or less. The Golden Eagles dropped a 63-62 decision to No. 8 West Virginia, and was beaten 74-72 by No. 6 Villanova, leading until the final minute and then missing free throws to lose both leads.
“Our composure has increased and gotten better,” Marquette coach Buzz Williams said. “I didn’t think at West Virginia that we had great composure down the stretch. Don’t know if it was bad, but more it was timid than aggressive.”
Marquette wasn’t timid against the Hoyas, aggressively guarding Greg Monroe, holding the Georgetown center to nine points.
“Greg didn’t have a good day,” Georgetown coach John Thompson III said. “Give them credit for that, though. Once he got the ball, they were coming from different angles.”
After missing the free throws against West Virginia and Villanova, the Golden Eagles went 4 of 5 from the line in the final minute against Georgetown. Lazar Hayward hit two with 57 seconds left and Butler added his in the final seconds.
“I knew I would step up and make them,” Butler said.
David Cubillan had a season-high 18 points and Hayward had 12 points and 11 rebounds for Marquette.
“He was the man,” Butler said of Cubillan. “He was hitting everything in practice. After the first two of my assists, actually he told me ‘I’m feeling it.’ I told him we’d keep giving it to him and he kept knocking them down.”
Cubillan made all six of his 3-point attempts in 29 minutes. Williams said the senior guard had been in his doghouse last season, but his play against Georgetown brought him to tears in the locker room after the game.
“I had frozen Cubbie out because he didn’t take a charge against Tennessee (on Dec. 16, 2008),” Williams said. “I’d never play him again. He was at a point where he was ready to roll and I was at the point where I was ready for him to roll.”
After the game against Tennessee, they had a meeting to discuss their relationship.
Williams said he told Cubillan: “ ‘If you’ll trust me I’ll never betray your trust.’ I’m really proud, not that he made the shot, but I’m really proud of the change that he has had and his leadership has been outstanding.”
For the game, the Golden Eagles made 12 of 26 3-pointers.
“They have some guys that can make 3-point shots,” Thompson said. “Cubillan was terrific tonight. Some were wide open, but he hit a couple tough ones with guys in his face, as did (Dwight) Buycks. Thats what they do.
“They made a lot of tough, contested shots and they had easy looks,” he said. “When you shoot 12 for 26, that’s the difference in the game.”
Austin Freeman had 20 points for Georgetown, which had a three-game winning streak snapped.
“They made real tough shots,” Freeman said. “We tried our best to contain that, but they hit a lot of tough shots.”
Marquette led the entire first half, but it was a different story after halftime. There were six lead changes and the game was tied eight times.
Hayward’s free throws gave Marquette a 60-57 lead with 57 seconds left.
Freeman then drove the right side of the lane and scored on a driving layup to make it 60-59.
Marquette’s Maurice Acker was fouled with 29 seconds to go, but missed the front end of a 1-and-1.
Freeman drove the right side of the lane again, but missed this time with Butler pulling down the rebound. He was fouled with 7.5 seconds left and made both free throws.
Wright’s 3-pointer missed, and Butler grabbed the rebound with 1 second left.
“It was a good look,” Thompson said. “We got what we wanted. It just didn’t go in. That’s the way the ball bounces.”
Julian Vaughn had 12 points while Monroe had nine points and 10 rebounds for Georgetown.
Buycks scored 10 points for Marquette.
The Golden Eagles took the lead for good at 56-53 on Darius Johnson-Odom’s 3-pointer with 4:08 to go.