Women’s hoops finishing strong

February 20, 2014

Ambika Ahuja

For a team that has spent their whole season looking for a signature win, the Georgetown women’s basketball team (9-18, 3-12 Big East) could not have asked for a better time to beat the No. 22 team in the country. The Hoyas squeaked past St. John’s (19-6, 12-2 Big East) 60-57 on Tuesday night.

In a game that was competitive from tip-off to buzzer, the Hoyas were unable to breathe until the very last second, when St. John’s senior guard Eugenia McPherson shot a 3-pointer that careened off the back of the rim.

Senior guard Samisha Powell led the Hoyas with 13 points, while freshman star Natalie Butler and senior captain Andrea White both pitched in with 11 rebounds each. The Hoyas were down 31-29 at the half after being down by 10 earlier in the game. The Hoyas finished the first half on a 12-4 run to get back into the game. The Blue and Gray had seven players who scored, with Butler leading the way with 8 points and 7 rebounds. In the second half, the Hoyas led by as many as nine points. Sophomore forward Logan Battle played a big role in building that lead, as she had two timely three-pointers and scored eight of her 12 points in the second half.

Coming into the game, the Red Storm had won eleven games in a row and were first in the Big East. A win over a conference rival and ranked opponent should help the Hoyas carry momentum into the Big East tournament.

This big win comes on the heels of a disappointing 67-59 loss to Butler (12-13, 7-7 Big East). The Hoyas out-rebounded the Bulldogs and shot a better percentage from the field, but according to Head Coach Jim Lewis, failed to play their best defense when it mattered most.

“The main thing we talked about after was when the game was on the line, we had three areas in our defensive efforts which cost us: we didn’t close out on shooters, our transition defense, and the inability to keep the ball out of the middle.”

The Hoyas were able to solve some of these problems on defense, as they held St. John’s to 4-of-14 shooting on three pointers and under 40 percent shooting from the field. Georgetown, on the other hand, shot 49 percent from the field.

Andrea White and Natalie Butler both continued their strong performances from earlier this season. While White, who is the team’s leading scorer this season, struggled to find the basket, she rounded out her performance in the rebounding department. Last week, she was recognized by earning a spot on the Big East weekly honor roll. Butler was named Big East Conference Rookie of the Week. This was the record-tying tenth time she earned the honor.

With three games left in the season against Villanova, Providence and DePaul, and the Big East tournament coming up, the Hoyas face the most daunting section of their schedule yet. But after Tuesday’s win, a season that many were saying was lost suddenly seems to have a hint of promise.

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