Providence Friars at Georgetown Hoyas, Verizon Center, Washington, DC
Saturday, February 5, 2011, 12:00 pm Eastern, TV: ESPN3
Opening Line: Georgetown -11.5
Current Line: Georgetown -11.5
Opening Total: 152
Current Total: 153
Money Line: Georgetown -700 / Providence +500
Following a three-game losing streak in the first half of January, the 13th-ranked Georgetown Hoyas (17-5, 6-4 Big East) have responded by winning five straight conference games heading into this league matchup with the Providence Friars (14-9, 3-7) on Saturday. The Hoyas (-11.5) have turned things around behind Big East Preseason Player of the Year Austin Freeman, who has averaged 22 points per game during the winning streak after failing to score more than 12 during the brief skid.
Georgetown is not the only hot team in this game though, as the Friars have managed to get all of their Big East wins in the last four games following an 0-6 start against conference opponents. They are coming off a 68-63 home win against South Florida after pulling off upsets over Villanova and Louisville. The problem for Providence is that the team still has not found a way to win a league game away from home, going 0-5 straight-up and 1-4 against the spread.
After beating the Wildcats and Cardinals, the Friars followed that up by dropping an 81-71 decision at Seton Hall. They are riding an 11-game road losing streak overall dating back to last season and their last conference win away from home came over a year ago at DePaul.
“You go on the road and you have to be able to execute even better than you do at home,” Providence head coach Keno Davis said. “I know our guys are looking forward to the challenge.”
The Hoyas have improved offensively since losing three in a row, averaging 72 points during their winning streak, up nine points following a 1-4 start in Big East play. But they have been even better defensively, especially over the last three games. Georgetown has held its last three opponents to an average of 59 points per game with the UNDER cashing each time.
“Lately I think our guys have found ways to win games,” Hoyas head coach John Thompson III said. “We just have to find a way to keep that going, which sounds very obvious but is very difficult in this league.”
Georgetown has won the last four meetings with the Friars, going 2-2 against the spread in those games. The last three home meetings for the Hoyas have all been decided by 10 points or less, and the UNDER is 7-1 in the past eight lined games between the teams.
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