Dec. 4, 2012
PEORIA, Ill. - Freshman Patricio Garino sparked a late rally with 18 of his career-high 24 points in the second half, but George Washington men's basketball couldn't overcome a 19-point deficit in a 72-68 loss to Bradley at Carver Arena on Tuesday.
Included in Garino's 18 second-half points was a stretch of 11 consecutive points that turned a 66-54 deficit with 3:31 remaining to 70-65 with 42 seconds left. GW couldn't get any closer than four in the final moments, gassed from clawing its way back from a 19-point deficit early in the second half while playing in its fourth game in eight days.
GW (4-4) also got a 12-point, 12-rebound double-double from senior Isaiah Armwood - his third double-double of the season - and 11 points off the bench from sophomore John Kopriva. Kopriva finished one point shy of his career-high of 12 set against Bradley in a 67-66 loss in the district last December. The Colonials have now dropped three straight to the Braves to fall to 2-4 in the all-time series.
Bradley (6-2) bounced back from a close home loss to No. 3 Michigan last weekend by racing out to a 17-point lead at halftime behind 12 first-half points from Jordan Prosser. Prosser finished with 17 on 8-of-10 shooting and eight rebounds to lead the Braves, while Walt Lemon Jr. added 14 and Dyricus Simms-Edwards chipped in 11.
The Colonials had three opportunities to cut their deficit to single-digits at a variety of times in the second half, but it wasn't until Garino took over in the final minutes before they threatened the outcome.
Trailing by 12 with just under four minutes to play, Garino converted a layup, then turned Lemon Jr. over and raced in for an uncontested dunk to pull GW within single-digits for the first time in 20 minutes. He continued the rally with a putback in the lane, defensive rebound and a free throw after getting fouled in transition.
Prosser scored to put Bradley up 68-61 with 1:44 left, but freshman Joe McDonald found Garino for a corner triple 26 seconds later to make it 68-64. Garino made another free throw following a Lemon layin for his 11th straight point.
GW never got within a possession of the lead though as a pair of Simms-Edwards foul shots canceled out three late free throws from Armwood and senior Dwayne Smith.
Playing its fourth game in eight days, GW came out sluggish in the first half and trailed 38-21 at halftime. Bradley turned 12 takeaways into a 16-0 edge in points off turnovers and shot 56 percent (18-32) to take a commanding lead into the locker room. GW finished with 23 turnovers that Bradley turned into a 24-8 edge in points off turnovers.
The Colonials shot 61.5 percent in the second half to nearly complete the comeback and finished at 47.1 percent for the game. The Braves made 31-of-62 shots, anchored by Prosser's performance.
GW returns to action at the Charles E. Smith Center on Saturday with the BUFF OUT presented by RCN against Kansas State (6-1). Tip-off for the nationally televised CBS Sports Network contest is 2:30 p.m.