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’ Reserve Sparks Second Half Comeback

Trailing by 12 points after starting the second half 0-for-8 from the field, Georgetown needed something to get back on track.

Enter junior guard Karee Houlette.

The junior college transfer came off the bench to score eight points in 10 minutes and stoked the Hoyas’ (13-9, 3-6 Big East) offense in a 61-60 win over the Red Storm (12-10, 3-6) Wednesday night in McDonough Gymnasium.

The rarely-used guard scored on a back-door cut 10 seconds after hitting the court. The quick strike turned into defensive momentum and over the next 2:30, Georgetown shrunk the deficit from 41-28 to 41-36. In that span, Houlette had five points, two rebounds and a steal.

“Coach always says, `If you’re on the bench, be ready because you never know when you’re number’s going to get called,'” Houlette said. “You don’t play every game but you have to be ready when you do.”

Houlette’s instant offense kept Georgetown in the game at a time when St. John’s was close to opening an insurmountable lead. But Houlette’s biggest moment came with 37 seconds left and Georgetown down 57-55.

Red Storm sophomore guard Monique McLean, who finished with 23 points, had just taken advantage of the Hoyas’ non-existent perimeter defense to hit her third three-ball of the contest, putting St. John’s back on top. With the clock ticking down and the game’s outcome on a razor’s edge, Houlette caught a pass from sophomore guard Shanice Fuller at the top of the three-point arc and, with her defender backing off a step, sank the biggest three-pointer she’s taken at Georgetown.

“I was open,” Houlette said, “so I took the shot.”

On St. John’s next possession, Marlow picked off an errant Wright pass and was immediately fouled. She hit both of her shots to give Georgetown a three-point lead with 13 seconds left. Wright pushed the ball up the floor for a last chance three-pointer to send the game to overtime but never got far enough to do so. The all-Big East guard, far from any defender, tripped and fell in front of her bench, coughing up the ball and any hope of a win.

While the last 40 seconds were serendipitous for Georgetown, the rest of the game was far from pretty. The Hoyas started the game 9-of-38 from the field and played poorly on defense, gifting St. John’s a choice between an uncontested mid-range jump shot and a wide-open three-pointer.

“We didn’t make as many defensive stops as we could have but we made enough to stay in the game,” Head Coach Terri Williams-Flournoy said. “We came out in a daze. We didn’t come out with the energy we needed to start the game, and it showed.”

The Red Storm led by as many as 13 in the first, shooting 4-of-9 from behind the arc. McLean had 12 of the team’s 30 points and guard Kelly McManmon hit all three of her three three-pointers in the first stanza.

While Houlette had the initial spark and finishing blow, Marlow’s quiet 11 points and six rebounds bolstered Georgetown when St. John’s double teams stifled center Aminata Diop after the Senegalese senior torched the Red Storm for nine first-half points.

Houlette’s moments stole the game for the Hoyas but no one player carried them for 40 minutes.

“[Marlow] hit some big shots inside . Karee came off the bench, did a great job,” Williams-Flournoy said. “Just once again, it’s a whole team effort. When everybody gives their whole effort, we win.”

Georgetown will need more than a mountain of effort for its next game, Tuesday at No. 1 Connecticut (21-1, 8-1). Though the Huskies recently fell to No. 7 Rutgers, they are at or near the top of the conference stats pile in every meaningful category. In their last two meetings, Connecticut has outscored Georgetown 164-64.

Free Throws:

– The Hoyas are now on their first two-game winning streak in the Big East since a win over Syracuse exactly two years from today.

– Wednesday was National Girls and Women in Sports Day. There was a halftime game between girls and women of all ages, from 12-year-olds to local grandmothers.

– Georgetown made 15-of-17 free throws and Marlow made 7-of-8 from the charity stripe.

– Director of Athletics Bernard Muir and his wife, Elizabeth, were honorary head coaches for the night.

– Georgetown outrebounded St. John’s 38-33 and held 19-12 advantage on the offensive glass. Diop led the way with seven boards, but sophomore guard Meredith Cox hauled in five offensive rebounds.

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