Jan. 27, 2014
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Monday night clash with Georgetown is on deck for the Villanova Wildcats (17-2 overall, 6-1 BIG EAST). The contest tips off shortly after 9 p.m. tonight at the Verizon Center and will be broadcast nationally on Fox Sports 1 (Gus Johnson and Bill Raftery).
Ryan Fannon and Whitey Rigsby will call the action on the Villanova radio network via CBS Sports Radio 610 in Philadelphia. The game can also be heard on Sirius/XM 85.
The Wildcats flew directly here after Saturday afternoon's 94-85 overtime victory over Marquette. They arrived at their hotel at 9:15 p.m. that evening and then practiced Sunday afternoon in the city.
Villanova overcame a Marquette rally from nine down with 2:33 remaining in regulation play to post its fourth BIG EAST road win of the season.
"We've got great leadership," noted VU head coach Jay Wright. "James Bell, (Ryan) Arcidiacono and Tony Chennault were saying in the huddle, `next play.' We use the word attitude. We try to prepare for those situations - being in the road, tough calls. Sometimes we are better at that than other times. This team is pretty good at that."
Georgetown (11-8 overall, 3-5 BIG EAST) dropped a 76-63 decision on Saturday night at Creighton. The Hoyas are led in scoring by guards D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera (17.5 ppg) and Markel Starks (16.2 ppg). Georgetown leads the BIG EAST in the category of field goal percentage defense (.396).
Villanova took last year's battle at the Wells Fargo Center, 67-57. But the Hoyas have won eight of the last 10 meetings between the programs.
Bell established a new career high with 30 points in Saturday's win and was named to the BIG EAST Conference Honor Roll for his work and is also the Philadelphia Big Five player of the week. He received helping hands from junior Darrun Hilliard (20 points) and sophomore Ryan Arcidiacono (20 points, 11 assists, zero turnovers).
The win at Marquette came after a 96-68 loss last Monday night at the Wells Fargo Center to Creighton.
"I know this is kind of cliché, but this team really handles adversity well," stated Wright. "They've got great confidence and character. We've had some good wins and in a lot of those wins there have been things to overcome. At Butler, we had a layup to win the game, a 2-footer, and missed it. This group doesn't die. Our staff enjoys coaching them for that reason."
Wright added one more thought to that last statement.
"I'd like us to play better defense," he noted.
The Wildcats will be idle until Saturday when they complete the Philadelphia Big Five portion of their schedule at Temple (4:00 p.m./CBS Sports Network).
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