Friday, February 15, 2013

Georgetown Escapes with Win Thanks to Tough Defense and Opportune Rebounding

It was going to be nearly impossible for Georgetown to win the battle of the boards against Cincinnati, the best rebounding team in the Big East.

However, Hoyas' head coach John Thompson III knew that his team did not necessarily need to out-rebound the Bearcats to win. Rather, the Hoyas just needed to limit Cincinnati's offensive boards and second chance points early on to help establish a tempo. 

SnapCall Question
That was not going to be an easy task though, as the Bearcats entered the game with the second most offensive rebounds in the conference. They also had one of the best rebound differentials at plus 7.5.

Despite Cincinnati's talent for crashing the offensive glass, as the answer to this SnapCall indicates, Georgetown was able to box out the Bearcats. Over this specific five possession stretch, they kept Cincinnati to zero offensive rebounds. In the entire first half, the Bearcats only managed to grab four offensive boards.

While Georgetown didn't dominate the glass by any means -- they finished with one more rebound than UC in the first half -- they did just enough in the early going to establish a tone and maintain a lead.

When the lead crumbled in the second half, it was because Cincinnati shifted into gear on the boards. In fact, during a six-minute stretch they grabbed seven rebounds to the Hoyas' three, and in the process, Cincinnati cut Georgetown's lead to just two.

So how were the Hoyas able to escape with a win?

They played their typical shut down defense, but they also cleaned their act up on the boards and matched Cincinnati rebound for rebound.

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