The Georgetown women’s basketball team wrapped up regular-season play with a 58-48 loss to Xavier University on Sunday in Cincinnati, Ohio. Junior forward Jillian Archer led the team with 23 points and nine rebounds, playing all 40 minutes of the game. The Hoyas will look to regroup before the Big East tournament kicks off Friday.
After losing to Xavier, the Hoyas (2-14, 2-14 Big East) find themselves seeded 11th in the Big East tournament. Sunday’s game was the only meeting between Georgetown and the Musketeers (5-9, 2-8 Big East) in the 2020-21 season, following the postponement of the teams’ Jan. 9 game at McDonough Arena because of COVID-19 concerns. Sunday’s win was Xavier’s first since Dec. 31, ending a six-game losing streak.
The Hoyas struggled on both ends of the court to begin the game, allowing the Musketeers to make a 10-0 scoring run. Xavier guard Lauren Wasylson sank a three-pointer to extend the Musketeers’ early lead to 10 points, forcing Georgetown to call a timeout with 7:37 remaining in the first quarter. The Musketeers made their first four shots, including two three-pointers, while the Hoyas failed to sink a single shot during the game’s first few minutes.
Head Coach James Howard spoke in a press conference after the game about the team’s early struggles.
“That’s probably the worst start we’ve had in the first nine games,” said Howard. “For us to come out and not follow the scouting, know where the shots are coming from and do our jobs, that was unacceptable, and that 10-0 run ended up being a big part of the difference in the game.”
Both teams struggled to maintain possession of the ball, with five turnovers each in the first quarter. Xavier managed to capitalize on these turnovers, outscoring the Hoyas 7-1 coming off of turnovers. The Musketeers led 23-11 at the end of the first quarter.
Archer scored nine of the team’s first 14 points, keeping the Hoyas in the game while leading all scorers. The Hoyas managed to find rhythm in the first half of the second quarter, going on a 8-0 scoring run to keep the score at 28-19. First-year guard Jazmyn Harmon sank a wide-open three-pointer, and Xavier called its first timeout of the game.
Both teams scored just once in the final three minutes of the second quarter, with layups by Archer and Xavier forward Sarah Leyendecker.
There was less disparity between the two teams in the second quarter, with both scoring 12 points to make the score 35-23 at halftime. Archer’s 13 points were a bright spot for the Hoyas’ offense, three shy of her season high in the first half alone.
Georgetown had trouble scoring at the start of the second half before an Archer layup with 7:53 left in the third quarter. Xavier responded with two field goals in five seconds, as guard Aaliyah Dunham stole the Georgetown inbound pass and scored a quick jumper. Graduate guard Milan Bolden-Morris quickly responded and scored her first points of the game, banking a three-pointer with 6:08 left in the quarter.
The Hoyas managed to cut the deficit to single digits with a 7-0 run late in the quarter, capped off by a jumper by sophomore forward Graceann Bennett. While Xavier was unable to score for over five minutes, a buzzer-beater layup by guard Kaelynn Satterfield left the score 46-36 at the end of the third quarter.
Layups by Harmon and junior forward Shanniah Wright quickly cut the Musketeer lead to just 10 points within 40 seconds of a Xavier timeout midway through the fourth frame. An Archer layup with 3:02 remaining in the game cut the game to single digits for the first time in the fourth quarter. Bolden-Morris banked a jumper off the glass, forcing Xavier to call a timeout with 2:11 remaining and just a 6-point lead.
Forward A’riana Gray’s jumper ended the 6-0 Georgetown run. An offensive foul by the Hoyas gave the ball back to the Musketeers with 1:37 remaining. Ransom’s fifth personal foul sent her out of the game. Georgetown failed to score in the final two minutes, allowing Xavier to come away with a 58-48 win. Archer led all players on both sides of the ball in scoring. Coach Howard spoke after the game about Archer’s career night.
“I think it’s a very good thing for her mentally to know that offensively,” said Howard. “To see that growth and see it happen is what we’ve been talking about, and it gives you another option … but then when she came alive offensively, the other two, Graceann and Kelsey, had a rough night, and when you have that off night, this is what happens.”
Georgetown will play Friday at 5 p.m. The Hoyas will face off against Creighton, having fallen to the Bluejays in both of the teams’ matchups this season. Georgetown concluded regular-season play with a 2-14 record.