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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — L.J. Peak helped save Christmas for the Georgetown Hoyas.
He knocked down a 3-pointer with 2:16 left to give Georgetown the lead for good, and the Hoyas held on to beat Charlotte 62-59 Tuesday night to snap a two-game losing streak.
Isaac Copeland had 12 points and eight rebounds to lead the Hoyas, while D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera had 11 points. Peak, Marcus Derrickson and Reggie Cameron finished with 10.
"You guys ever heard the phrase 'cancel Christmas?' Well if this hadn't turned out like it did, Christmas was going to be cancelled in the Thompson household," Georgetown coach John Thompson III joked after the game.
The Hoyas (7-5) were coming off home losses to Monmouth and UNC-Asheville and, for a while, looked like they were about to surrender another lead.
They led by 14 in the first half, but that dwindled away after Charlotte's Braxton Ogbueze started to get hot, hitting four 3-pointers in the first half to close the Hoyas lead to 3 at the break.
Ogbueze finished with a game-high 18 points on 5-of-8 shooting from behind the 3-point arc.
The teams traded the lead throughout the second half before Peak's 3-pointer from the left wing.
The 49ers missed on the other end and Smith-Rivera drove the left side of the lane and scored for an old-fashioned 3-point play to push Georgetown's lead to 59-54 with 1:25 left in the game and the Hoyas held on from there.
Thompson said there is plenty of work to be done before the Hoyas open Big East Conference play on Dec. 30.
"Our defense is not close to where it needs to be for us to have success against the toughest basketball conference in the country," Thompson said.
Poor shooting plagued the 49ers throughout the game.
The Hoyas, who were bigger and longer, held the 49ers to 21-of-56 shooting from the field. Charlotte didn't do much to help themselves, converting only 10 of 20 free throws.
Charlotte (2-9) has lost seven of its last eight games under first-year coach Mark Price.
Price said he liked his team's intensity level and defense, but added "we have to shoot better than 35 percent from the field."
"But the progress is being made, you can see it," Price said. "Two weeks ago, that might have been a 20-point deficit at halftime but we were able to get it back to being a 3-point game at halftime."
Joseph Uchebo had 12 points and 10 rebounds in the loss for the 49ers.
"We just brought effort," Ogbueze said. "We were playing hard. The energy and effort we came with — you always give yourself a chance when you play that hard and defend like that."
Georgetown: Derrickson was charged with a technical foul for disputing a call in the second half.
Charlotte: This was the fifth time the 49ers have played at Time Warner Cable Arena, home of the NBA's Charlotte Hornets.
Price was back on a familiar court, coaching in the same arena where he spent two seasons as an assistant coach for Michael Jordan's Hornets. Price said what was weird is sitting on different bench, where the NBA visiting teams usually sit.
Georgetown: Dec. 30 at DePaul on Dec. 30 to open Big East play.
Charlotte: Home against The Citadel on Tuesday.
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