And now it starts…

NEW YORK—In the opening minutes against Notre Dame, Georgetown's incarnation of the Princeton offense was as pretty as Milwaukee in winter.

In the first six minutes and change the Hoyas turned the ball over twice and shot 0-for-11 from the field, including five missed three-pointers and four missed layups.

During one especially inspiring stretch in the middle of this melee, Georgetown missed a three-pointer, recovered the offensive rebound, missed a layup, grabbed the offensive board, missed another attempt from behind the arc, snagged an offensive rebound, failed to score on a second layup attempt, snatched its fourth offensive rebound of the possession and missed another three-pointer before Notre Dame managed to coral the rebound.

All the while Notre Dame had jumped out to an 11-0 lead. Collin Falls made his first two three-pointers, was fouled on his third attempt and proceeded to make all three free throws.

Yet, Notre Dame head coach Mike Brey knew the game was far from over.

"I give Georgetown the credit," he said. "They're older, and playing together for a while. They don't get rattled, they just methodically play."

As a result, the Hoyas came from behind to defeat the Fighting Irish 67-63 in the first round of the Big East men's basketball tournament. With the win, they advance to face Marquette in the quarterfinals at 1 p.m., CST today.

Even though Georgetown's shots were not falling, it was not all in vain. During that early stretch the Hoyas dominated the offensive glass. This trend continued and when the Hoyas' shots finally started to fall, it spelled trouble for the Fighting Irish.

"We gave up second shots at key times, that really hurt," Brey said. "We gave ourselves a chance to win, but their put-backs hurt us."

The Hoyas finished the game with 18 offensive rebounds and held a decisive 20-4 lead in second chance points.

This does not bode well for Marquette, a team that has been out rebounded by a combined total of 175-156 in its past four games.

Oddly enough, Georgetown was the last team Marquette managed to out-rebound. In Marquette's 57-51 win on Feb. 16, Marquette won the rebounding battle 31-30.

If Marquette hopes to do that again it will need to contain Brandon Bowman and Roy Hibbert, Georgetown's 7-foot-2 sophomore center.

"On the defensive end, he's getting better," Georgetown coach John Thompson III said of Hibbert. "He's getting better. But, you know, he is a presence, and we need him to continue to be a bigger presence."

Hibbert was held to just four points against Notre Dame. However, scoring is not everything. He grabbed a team-high 11 rebounds, including eight on the defensive end.

Bowman led the team on the other end of the court, grabbing six offensive rebounds against the Fighting Irish.

"I got a couple big offensive rebounds down the stretch that we kind of converted on," Bowman said. "So plays like that, a couple tips here and there on defense, things like that … Coach has been preaching to the team about."