The Georgetown Women’s basketball team (17-13, 9-9 Big East) fell to the Fordham University Rams (22-11, 11-5 A-10) Friday evening at McDonough Arena in the first round of the Women’s National Invitational Tournament, by a score of 60-49. While the teams in the WNIT are not explicitly ranked, the Hoyas and the Rams occupied the spots of the 64-team bracket typically reserved for the three and 14 seeds, respectively, qualifying the loss as a significant upset for the Blue and Gray.
Fordham was led by sophomore forward Mary Goulding who had 19 points, 10 rebounds, three assists, and a block. Junior forward G’mrice Davis also contributed a double-double, with 16 points, 17 rebounds, and three assists. For Georgetown, junior guard Dorothy Adomako and sophomore guard Dionna White each scored 17 points. Adomako also recorded seven rebounds, an assist, two blocks, and one steal, while White chipped in eight rebounds, three assists, one block, and four steals.
The game started slowly. Fordham opened the scoring with a floater from the elbow by Goulding, but the Hoyas responded with a driving layup from Adomako. Georgetown senior forward Faith Woodard picked up two fouls by the 5:00 mark of the first quarter, and was forced to sit on the bench. Woodard has been a key contributor for the Hoyas all season, but despite her absence, the team managed to jump out to a 15-6 lead by the end of the period.
“That’s why we have our depth. You never know when your name is going to be called, and you have to be accountable,” said Georgetown Head Coach Natasha Adair.
The pace did not increase in the second quarter. Fordham spent the first six minutes chipping away at Georgetown’s lead, eventually pulling within three, but the Hoyas finished the half on an 8-0 run, leading 25-14 at the intermission.
The game initially remained lopsided after the break, with the Hoyas enjoying a double digit lead for the first two minutes of the third quarter. However, Fordham’s shots began to fall, and a 8-0 brought the Rams within three points, forcing the Blue and Gray to call a timeout. However, the chance to regroup did not alleviate their struggles, and a three pointer from Goulding tied the game at 31-31. Woodard responded with a three of her own to retake the lead, but back-to-back long balls from senior guard Hannah Missry tied the game and then gave Fordham their go-ahead points.
“The message at halftime was understanding that they are 0-12 from three, and our concern was that they got twelve threes off,” said Adair. “This a very good Fordham team, and they like to shoot the ball, and it’s our job to contest those threes.”
Fordham shot 24.1 percent in the first half, but 58.8 percent in the third quarter, including 6-9 from beyond the arc.
As the Rams gained momentum, Georgetown lost its rhythm.. Shots stopped falling, and flow was impossible to find. Repeated game stoppages for game-clock errors and unexplained official reviews didn’t help, as the team floundered and Fordham never looked back. Despite energetic moments, such as Adomako intercepting an inbounds pass with 2.6 seconds left and immediately drilling a buzzer-beating jump shot to close the third, the Blue and Gray never truly threatened, as Fordham led by five or more, and often by double digits, for the entirety of the fourth period.
It was an emotional end to the season, especially for graduating seniors like Woodard.
“I’ve had a really good experience [here at Georgetown],” she said. “I wanted to get the win but obviously it didn’t happen tonight.”
Despite not achieving her goal for the evening, Woodard’s tenure at Georgetown has been characterized by the team’s marked improvement. Since Adair’s arrival during Woodard’s sophomore year, each season has seen a better record than the last, and this year’s post-season appearance is only the team’s second tournament bid since 2011-12. The first appearance was also a WNIT bid last season. That team was also coached by Adair and led by Woodard.
Despite her impending graduation, Woodard is confident that the upward trend will continue.
I just hope that the future of this program does something that weren’t able to do this year,” she said. “I know positive things will come out of this program.”
Image Credits: Georgetown Sports Information