No. 4 Villanova Beats No. 11 Georgetown 82-77

Scottie Reynolds wasn’t interested in talking about his 27 points. He is a mature senior star now and the play he wanted to talk about after Villanova’s seventh straight win was an offensive rebound.

The 6-foot-2 guard was able to grab the rebound of a missed 3-pointer by teammate Reggie Redding as the shot clock expired, before falling to the court and calling a timeout.

Reynolds glossed over his big offensive game Sunday to talk proudly of his lone offensive rebound in the fourth-ranked Wildcats’ 82-77 victory over No. 11 Georgetown.

”I’m not saying I’m great, but you see the great players come up with the big play, do whatever it takes, an offensive rebound, a dive on the floor, taking a charge,” he said, referring to his big play with 1:55 left and the Wildcats ahead 72-69. ”It doesn’t have to be a shot all the time.”

Reynolds was asked if he knew Villanova didn’t have the possession arrow and that’s why he called the timeout.

”Kind of,” he answered with a sheepish grin. ”Now I’ll say yes.”

The Wildcats (16-1, 5-0) moved into a tie for first place in the Big East with No. 16 Pittsburgh, but the win wasn’t sealed until Reynolds and freshman Maalik Wayns combined to go 8 of 8 from the free-throw line over the final 36 seconds.

”He’s had big scoring games,” Villanova coach Jay Wright said of Reynolds. ”He made big shots. He’s had some amazing games in his career. But he’s developed an efficiency about his game. Getting that offensive rebound among all those trees and calling timeout. He does whatever is necessary.”

Greg Monroe had 29 points and 16 rebounds for the Hoyas (13-3, 4-2), who trailed 46-31 at halftime and managed to tie the game twice but never could take the lead.

Reynolds, coming off a 36-point game against Louisville, scored 12 of Villanova’s first 16 points in the game. The Wildcats took command in the first half with a 14-0 run that made it 28-15.

”We played as well as we could in the first half and didn’t play well in the second,” Wright said. ”Monroe is awesome. He takes over the game and we didn’t have an answer for him. We tried three different guys on him.”

Last Saturday, the Hoyas recovered from a 15-point halftime deficit to beat No. 15 Connecticut, but they couldn’t match the comeback against Villanova.

Austin Freeman had 10 of his 22 points in the opening 3:38 of the second half as the Hoyas cut right into the big deficit.

”We talked about Freeman taking over at halftime just like he did against UConn,” Wright said. ”In the second half they scored and got into their defense. In the first half we forced turnovers and got into transition.”

Georgetown coach John Thompson III said his team changed its point of emphasis in the second half to get back in the game.

”In the first half we got shots but we missed four or five layups and we had too many turnovers. They used junk defenses with guys running and jumping and it was very effective,” he said. ”In the second half we wanted to get in the paint more.”

The game bogged down for a long part of the second half as the teams combined to miss 20 straight shots from the field over a 6:12 span. Monroe’s rebound basket of the 20th miss tied it at 67 with 4:36 to play.

Taylor King scored on a reverse 21 seconds later to end Villanova’s drought and Monroe tied it for the last time with 4:01 left.

Reynolds gave the Wildcats the lead for good at 71-69 on a drive down the lane on which he was fouled, but he missed the free throw.

Georgetown, which shot 39.3 percent (24 of 61), went cold again, managing just two field goals the rest of the way, the last on a move down low by Monroe with 9.5 seconds left that made it 80-77. Wayns clinched it with two free throws with 6.9 seconds to go.

Maalik Wayns hitting those free throws was huge,” Wright said.

Thompson said Reynolds ”can’t be contained.”

”He’s too good of an offensive player,” he said. ”When they need a basket they get him the ball and he’s been doing it for four years.”

Villanova matched its best Big East start since 2002-03 and continued its best overall start since the 1963-64 team opened 17-1.

Redding and Wayns both had 11 points for Villanova.

Jason Clark had 16 points for the Hoyas, who had won five of their last six.

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