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USF humbled by Hoyas

Published: Monday, February 6, 2012

Updated: Monday, February 6, 2012 12:02

Coming off its longest break since beginning conference play, the USF men's basketball team fell flat Saturday morning at No. 14 Georgetown, losing 75-45 after an ugly performance throughout.

The sluggish Bulls (13-10, 6-4) seemingly sleepwalked through the majority of their game against the Hoyas, losing by 30 points, their largest margin of defeat since joining the Big East in 2005.

A USF team that has struggled to a 2-9 road record this season didn't seem to be awake for the unusual 11 a.m. tipoff, at one point turning the ball over on 9 consecutive possessions.

"Today just wasn't our day," coach Stan Heath said. "I don't know what it was. Early start, late start, I don't know. It wasn't our day. This wasn't our typical team."

The Hoyas looked strong defensively from start to finish, holding the Bulls without a single point for nearly 11 minutes in the first half, from the15:08 mark to the 4:24 mark. Fifteen minutes into the game, USF had only scored five points.

Despite the offensive struggles, USF's defense — which entered the game as the best scoring defense in the conference — was in rhythm throughout the first half, holding the Hoyas scoreless for long stretches and limiting Georgetown (18-4, 8-3) to a narrow halftime lead, 23-18.

That defensive rhythm didn't make it out of the locker rooms at halftime, with the Hoyas embarking on a 16-4 run to begin the second half, taking clear control of the game and cruising to their fifth win in six games.

Senior forward Augustus Gilchrist was the only Bull with a double-digit scoring output, scoring 15 points on 5-of-11 shooting. One of the only other statistics that the Bulls earned double figures in were turnovers, with 17 for the game, four more than their season average.

"(Turnovers have been) our recipe for lack of success," Heath said. "We did the same thing against Marquette. We had 22 in that game. When we've had losses, that's typically the magic number that sticks out for us."

USF now returns to the Tampa Bay Times Forum, where they are 11-1 at home, to host Pittsburgh on Wednesday at 7 p.m.

The resurgent Panthers (15-9, 4-7) have won four straight games since opening Big East play 0-7.

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