2003 NIT 2003 NIT

Updated: Tuesday, March 18, 2003 10:23 PM EST
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Georgetown 70, Tennessee 60
Georgetown Hoyas
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Tennessee Volunteers
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KNOXVILLE, Tennessee (Ticker) -- Tennessee's once-promising season ended with a whimper as it fell at home to Georgetown, 70-60, in the first round of the National Invitation Tournament.

The Volunteers (17-12) lost six of their final eight following a six-game February winning streak that included victories over Southeastern Conference rivals Georgia and Florida.

"I'm not happy with this game," Tennessee coach Buzz Peterson said. "But overall, we had a good season and I'm proud of the team."

Georgetown (16-14) won its fourth consecutive road game, getting 17 points and 14 rebounds from Mike Sweetney. The Hoyas turned down an NIT bid last season.

Volunteers senior Ron Slay collected 17 points and eight rebounds in his final college game.

Georgetown trailed at halftime but used a 12-1 run to take a 38-30 lead with 16:37 left. Sweetney hit a layup to cap the burst, and the Hoyas never looked back.

"When you beat an SEC team on their home court, you have to feel happy about it," Georgetown coach Craig Esherick said. "I'm happy we get to play again."

Georgetown advanced to the second round, where it will face Charleston, Kent State, Providence or Richmond. Those teams play opening-round games on Wednesday.

Elgrace Wilborn had four points and led Tennessee with 11 rebounds. Wilborn also tied a school record with six blocked shots.

Tennessee was without senior Jon Higgins, who was suspended for the postseason due to eligibility problems.

Gerald Riley added 15 points and Victor Samnick 11 for Georgetown.

Only 3,011 fans attended the game at Thompson-Boling Arena after the Vols were hoping to make it to the NCAA Tournament.

"I appreciate the fans who turned out tonight," Peterson said. "They were loud and very supportive."

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