Long Beach State wraps up a weekend of sightseeing and basketball tonight as the 49ers move over the river and through the woods to Fort Myer to play American University after losing to Georgetown Saturday afternoon at Capital Centre.

While AU (3-3) will try, beginning at 7:30 p.m., to duplicate the Hoyas' success, Georgetown will go back to Landover for an 8 p.m. game against Rice. George Mason faces Long Island University in the first of four road games before the Patriots start conference play.

"I thought I'd seen the last of the Fort," said Long Beach State Coach Joe Harrington, who is in his first season after coaching George Mason seven years. "It's always been good to me."

Indeed, Harrington hasn't lost there as a coach and his 4-2 team figures as favorite over the Eagles. AU, though, has had six days off since beating George Washington, 78-63, at Fort Myer. In that win over the Colonials, American Coach Ed Tapscott finally got help from his front court and the Eagles will need a similar effort against Long Beach State.

"I'm familiar with American, how they play and most of their players," Harrington said. "But I'm sure Ed knows how I coach, so it's all probably a wash. I might know more about his players than he does mine, but then he saw us play Saturday."

In that game, Georgetown was ahead by 46-41 with 15 minutes left before pulling away, 82-63.

"We made some errors that {prevented} a closer game," Harrington said. "We missed too many free throws {14 of 27} and we gave up some points on free throws when we didn't block out. Those are some easy things that would have made it closer."

The 18th-ranked Hoyas (6-1) were led by Charles Smith's 20 points. Smith has been sitting at game's start and probably will continue to do so, but Coach John Thompson was asked if Smith was becoming the leader in the back court.

"I'm the leader -- in the front court, the back court, on the board and everywhere else," Thompson joked. "But Charles has got to give us some offensive punch and when we go to war he will go in."

Georgetown should have little difficulty tonight. The Owls are 2-4 with four straight losses. The wins were over the University of San Diego and Missouri-Kansas City; the last defeat by 107-86 to Southern on Dec. 8.

"I was here last year," said first-year coach Scott Thompson, who was an assistant at Arizona then, "and you've got to be impressed with Georgetown's quickness, intensity and variety of defenses. We need to take good shots and play tough defense to sneak one out of here."

George Mason (4-2) is coming off victories over Central Florida and Radford, but Coach Rick Barnes isn't putting a lot of stock in that streak. "I don't think you know how good a team is until it's played eight to 12 games," he said. "We're going through a tough stretch of our schedule."

After LIU, Mason plays at St. Bonaventure, West Virginia and Bucknell. And the Patriots will do so without freshman reserve forward Danny Deane, who broke an ankle in Friday's practice. "We're checking into the redshirt situation" for Deane, Barnes said, "but it's very close."

Freshman Joe Lucas again will start at center in place of Kevin McNamara, Barnes said. "Joe has worked hard, been productive and deserves a chance," Barnes said. "Kevin is pressing a little and it might do him some good to sit and see the game develop in front of him."