Georgetown raced out to an early 15-4 lead with 12:46 remaining in the first half on a dunk by the center Hibbert. Vanderbilt battled back and cut the Hoyas lead to just 29-24 with 5:10 remaining in the half on a three-point shot by Dan Cage. Cage went on to score 10 points for Vandy.
A three-point shot by Patrick Ewing Jr. put the Hoyas back up by 11 at 39-28 with 1:45 remaining in the half. Vanderbilt finished up the half with a 7-0 run initiated by an Alex Gordon three-pointer. Gordon finished with a team leading 15 points for the Commodores after replacing struggling and scoreless freshman guard Jermaine Beale who had started the game.
A Derrick Byars steal and lay-up opened the second half scoring and pulled Vanderbilt within 2 at 39-37. It would be the closest Vandy would get in the second half. The Hoyas rebuilt their lead to 49-41 with 15:23 remaining in the game on free throws to Green.
After Vandy briefly cut the lead to 5 on a Byars three-pointer, the Hoyas quickly jumped back up by 10 with 10:33 remaining. The visitors then methodically added to their lead and with 1:21 remaining in the game the lead had bulged to 19 at 84-65. Byars finished with 14.
Vanderbilt completed 22 of 53 field goals for a 42 percent accuracy. By contrast Georgetown completed 32 of 61 for 52 percent. Vandy struggled from three-point land, managing just 5 of 21 shots for 24 percent. The Hoyas weren't much better, making just 4 of 12 shots for 33 percent. Vanderbilt made a respectable 72 percent of their free throws compared to just 67 percent for Georgetown. The Hoyas out rebounded Vanderbilt 38-33.
Vanderbilt falls to 0-1 with the loss. The Commodores next travel to Wake Forest for a November 21st meeting with the Demon Deacons. Georgetown improves to 2-0 with the victory. The Hoyas next host Ole Dominion on Sunday.
VandyMania's guest expert says:
Georgetown Whips Vandy 86-70
The Hoyas, ranked eighth in the country, came into Nashville's Memorial Gym and led the Commodores from wire to wire before winning by 16 points. Vandy cut into a twelve point Georgetown lead to trail by 39-35 at halftime.
Coach Thompson's team looked every bit like the team that went to the NCAA Elite Eight a year ago. His three returning starters scored as follows: Green had 19, Hibbert had 18 and Wallace had 16 points.
The near-capacity crowd watched turnovers and poor defense in the paint keep the Commodores from pulling even or going ahead. The absence of Davis Nwanko in the middle was obvious throughout the game.
Gordon, coming off the bench, led all Vandy scorers with 15 points. Shan Foster was denied a field goal for the entire night.
The Hoyas improved their record to 2-0 while Vandy fell to 0-1. The Commodores will play the Demon Deacons of Wake Forest next Tuesday evening in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
Vanderbilt's Ted Skuchas defends. Skuchas finished with 6 points. (VM/Stan Jones)