As bubble teams around them have fallen in recent weeks and after losing two games itself that it could have done without, Villanova got another victory over a Top 5 team Wednesday that all but punches its ticket to the NCAA tournament.
Sophomore JayVaughn Pinkston scored 20 points and Villanova beat No. 5 Georgetown, 67-57, at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia.
The win moves the Wildcats to 19-12 overall and 10-8 in the Big East with quality wins over Louisville, Syracuse, Marquette, and now the Hoyas. Of the teams currently on the bubble, few if any boast the slate of victories that Villanova does. At the same time, though, the Wildcats have bad losses to Columbia and Seton Hall.
Villanova’s RPI (55) and SOS (29) will also help on Selection Sunday, barring an unlikely run in the Big East tournament that gets it the automatic bid to the NCAA tournament.
Turnovers are still a concern for Villanova, though. The Wildcats turned the ball over 16 times on Wednesday, but were still +4 in that category by forcing an uncharacteristic 20 Georgetown turnovers. Looking ahead to the Big East tournament, that will likely be one of the stumbling blocks for this team.
In the absence of a consistently dominant scorer who can take over a game down the stretch, turnovers can lead to big deficits and early exits from the remaining tournaments this season. And the burden falls on the entire lineup. Every Villanova starter had at least two turnovers Wednesday and every player that saw the floor had at least one.
For more coverage, visit CSNPhilly.com.