Hoyas rout Midshipmen

7-2 Hibbert comes up big with 20 points

Georgetown 72 Navy 49

College Basketball


The last time a big man had his way this easily on the grounds of the Naval Academy, David Robinson was taking the Midshipmen to the Elite Eight.

Unfortunately for Navy's basketball team, the inside force belonged to Georgetown last night. The Mids had no answer for Roy Hibbert, a 7-foot-2 sophomore whose 20 points, seven rebounds and four blocks led the Hoyas to a 72-49 victory at Alumni Hall in the season opener for both teams.

"My teammates know I'm going to catch the ball now. Last year, I fumbled it," said Hibbert, who was eager to visit the campus where "The Admiral" ruled two decades ago. "I am a David Robinson fan. We talked about that this morning."

Hibbert was a project when he came out of Georgetown Prep. He's not ready to challenge Connecticut's Josh Boone (South Carroll) for the title of best center in the Big East Conference just yet, but he countered the Mids' defensive strategy of denying the back doors and three-pointers in the Princeton offense used by coach John Thompson III.

Hibbert averaged 5.1 points and 3.5 rebounds last season, and needed just over two minutes to get to that scoring mark last night. He posted up and dunked off the opening tip, and had a three-point play on Georgetown's third possession.

The Hoyas led 14-2 after six minutes, but went into an offensive funk when 6-9 forward Jeff Green, last season's co-Big East Rookie of the Year, got his second foul and sat the last 12 minutes of the half.

The Midshipmen couldn't score either, however, as they had 10 turnovers to seven field goals in the first 20 minutes. When Hibbert's put-back extended the Georgetown cushion to 23-10 with 4:50 left in the first half, he had more points than Navy.

Hibbert's second-half highlight came on a 16-footer, after the Mids dared him to shoot from the high post. He played sparingly in the last 15 minutes, when Green got most of his 13 points.

Point guard Ashanti Cook and sixth man Darrell Owens combined for 22 points for the Hoyas. Corey Johnson and Greg Sprink, the Navy guards who made the Patriot League All-Rookie team last year, had 14 apiece. The Mids never stopped scrapping, and out-rebounded the Hoyas in the second half.

Since 1998, the two programs have combined for one NCAA appearance, and second-year coaches Thompson and Billy Lange have works in progress that reflect their aspirations and leagues.

Navy, which won just nine games last season, won't see anything close to Georgetown's talent again unless it wins the Patriot and gets to the NCAA tournament. The Hoyas will be disappointed if they don't get there, as they are capable of finishing in the top third of the Big East.

At one time in the first half, Lange had three of his six freshmen on the floor. Thompson started three sophomores, as John Wallace joined Green and Hibbert.

"We don't see this type of length every day in practice," said Lange, who was a second-grader the last time the two teams met, in 1978. "We had our guys stand on chairs to practice defending their threes."


GEORGETOWN-Owens 3-5 3-3 10, Bowman 3-6 1-3 9, Cook 5-8 1-3 12, Kilkenny-Diaw 0-0 0-0 0, Crawford 0-1 0-0 0, Green 6-11 0-1 13, Hibbert 8-11 4-7 20, Wallace 3-7 0-0 6, Egerson 0-2 0-0 0, Sapp 0-1 2-2 2. Totals 28-52 11-19 72.

NAVY-Fannin 4-9 0-2 8, Green 0-1 0-0 0, Hooper 0-0 0-0 0, Baldwin 0-3 0-3 0, Johnson 5-14 4-6 14, Sprink 4-11 4-4 14, Reed 0-0 0-0 0, Colbert 0-0 0-0 0, Brigham 2-5 0-0 5, Kina 1-4 2-2 4, Teague 1-3 0-0 2, Bailey 1-1 0-0 2. Totals 18-51 10-17 49.

Halftime-Georgetown 35-18. 3-point goals-Georgetown 5-13 (Bowman 2-2, Green 1-2, Owens 1-3, Cook 1-3, Sapp 0-1, Wallace 0-2), Navy 3-11 (Sprink 2-4, Brigham 1-2, Kina 0-1, Teague 0-1, Johnson 0-3). Fouled out-None. Rebounds-Georgetown 36 (Green, Hibbert 7), Navy 33 (Fannin 8). Assists-Georgetown 9 (Wallace 4), Navy 8 (Kina 3). Total fouls-Georgetown 17, Navy 20. A-4,104.

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