Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Hoyas Hang Tough, But Fall to Mighty Huskies

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Freshman guard Adria Crawford drives down the lane during a 80-61 loss at home against Connecticut. Crawford scored 13 points to lead the Hoyas.

It may have taken longer than anticipated, but the undefeated Connecticut Huskies eventually broke out for the big win everyone expected. Despite giving top-ranked Connecticut (21-0, 7-0) everything it could handle during the first 15 minutes, the Georgetown Hoyas (13-8, 3-5) couldn’t stay with the Huskies as the game wore down, eventually falling 80-61. Connecticut’s scoring balance and inside advantage took their toll on Georgetown, resulting in a one-sided rout.

“It’s a learning experience, like every game is a learning experience,” freshman guard Adria Crawford said. “We did some things right, we did some things wrong: you just learn from them and you grow and get better.”

The Hoyas were the Huskies’ equals early on in the contest, as the two teams traded leads throughout a half marked by its frenetic pace and prolific outside shooting. Connecticut’s full-court press forced Georgetown into 14 first-half turnovers and led to several easy fast-break layups. The Hoyas’ half-court pressure defense, meanwhile, forced 12 first-half turnovers, throwing off the Huskies’ rhythm. That didn’t stop the team’s sharpshooters from firing away. Senior guard Karee Houlette shot 4-for-5 from long range and Georgetown made 5-of-10 three-pointers in the half, while Connecticut shot 5-for-11 from behind the arc in the opening 20 minutes.

“Today I thought they started the game with an intensity level that – they got a couple loose balls early, they forced a couple turnovers, made a couple shots, and for the longest time it was 6-5 or 7-6,” Connecticut Head Coach Geno Auriemma said. “It seemed like neither team could really get any offense going. Sometimes the game is played that way. I don’t care if you’ve got the best offense in the world, I don’t care what sport it is, sometimes you’ve got to win that way. This game was kind of ugly. Today was kind of a choppy, ugly game at times.”

With 7:35 remaining in the first half and the Hoyas trailing 21-17, freshman guard Rubylee Wright took the ball coast-to-coast against the press and made a floater over 6-foot-4 junior center Tina Charles. Crawford’s steal on the Huskies’ next possession led to a three-pointer from Houlette and a 22-21 lead. Connecticut freshman guard Tiffany Hayes responded with a trey of her own, but Houlette answered with another three to give Georgetown a 25-24 lead, its last of the game.

From that point on, until midway through the second half, when the game had already been decided, the Huskies had their way with the Hoyas. Connecticut closed out the half with a 21-5 run to take control of the game. The Hoyas struggled offensively in the closing minutes of the half, turning the ball over six times in the final six minutes.

The Huskies maintained their momentum after the intermission. Connecticut scored on its first two possessions before Crawford made a three-point play for Georgetown’s first points of the half. The Huskies then scored the game’s next 21 points to extend the lead to 70-33 and put the game out of reach. Georgetown fought back to within 19 as Auriemma deepened his rotation, but the second half never offered the Hoyas much hope of a comeback.

Charles led the Huskies with 17 points on 6-of-8 shooting and 5-of-6 from the line, with senior guard Renee Montgomery, sophomore forward Maya Moore and Hayes each scoring 14 points. Junior guard Kalana Greene added 10 points, giving Connecticut five double-digit scorers for the 10th time this season.

Houlette led all scorers with 20 points before leaving the game with an apparent ankle injury with just under three minutes remaining. Crawford scored 13 points and grabbed 10 boards for her second double-double of the season and sophomore guard Monica McNutt added 10 points. With junior forward Jaleesa Butler, the team’s leading scorer entering the game, out with an ankle injury, Georgetown just didn’t have the firepower to stay with Connecticut. Senior forward Krystle Hatton and junior guard Shanice Fuller struggled with foul trouble and both failed to register a single point.

Wright provided a spark off the bench, scoring six points and handing out a team-high four assists to draw praise from her coach.

“Little Rubylee, she’s a freshman point guard, so she’s still learning time and score situations, when to make drives, when not to make drives,” Williams-Flournoy said. “I thought she played extremely well in the first half. For a freshman point guard, you just want them to continue to get their confidence up and take this into February.”

The Hoyas now hit the road for their next few games, visiting No. 25 DePaul (16-5, 4-3) on Wednesday before a Saturday trip to Rutgers (12-7, 4-4).

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