Riding a four-game winning streak, the Georgetown women’s basketball team welcomes an opportunity to continue to climb the conference standings in two home games this weekend.
The Hoyas face the Providence Friars (10-12, 2-9 Big East) on Friday before hosting the Creighton Bluejays (15-6, 9-2 Big East) on Sunday.
Georgetown’s (13-7, 5-5 Big East) recent streak follows a sluggish 1-5 start in conference play, and the team is focused on continuing its momentum moving toward the end of its Big East schedule.
“Toughness is what they’ve been preaching since the beginning of the season, so it’s a new ballgame,” senior forward Faith Woodard said of the coaching staff after the team’s 54-49 win over Villanova (11-10, 6-4 Big East) on Saturday. “It’s the second half of the Big East and we’re looking to really get the wins on the final stretch.”
Sophomore guard Dionna White continues to lead the Georgetown offense. The jet-quick 5-foot-5 guard averages 16.2 points per game, leading Georgetown and ranking second in the Big East. White is also capable of making an impact on the defensive end, as she uses her quick hands to swipe 3.6 steals per game, which ranks No. 7 in the nation.
“We score off our defense, so we really focus on stopping [opponents] from scoring so we can have easy buckets,” White said.
Providence — Georgetown’s next opponent — started its season with a seven-game winning streak against nonconference opponents. However, the team has struggled against league competition, dropping seven consecutive contests at one point before beating Marquette (16-6, 7-4 Big East) at home on Friday. That losing streak included a 71-39 blowout at the hands of the Hoyas in Providence on Jan. 10.
Georgetown has the added benefit of home-court advantage on Friday.
“We just feed off of their energy, you know, that’s our sixth man,” Woodard said of the home fans. “When they have energy, when our bench has energy, we can’t lose.”
Head Coach Natasha Adair said she has also appreciated the consistent energy that her team’s bench has brought to each game. During the team’s game against Villanova, Georgetown’s reserves were on their feet after every bucket down the stretch of a close game, providing needed energy and support to their teammates.
“It’s something that we talk about,” Adair said. “I’m a big energy coach. In practice, and games, we talk about sharing energy and sharing enthusiasm. And right after the game, I thanked our bench because that’s a vital role.”
Georgetown will have a tougher matchup — at least on paper — when Creighton visits McDonough Arena on Sunday. The Bluejays rank second in the Big East with a 9-2 conference record and have won six of their last seven conference games.
Currently, Creighton is projected as a No. 9 seed in the NCAA tournament on ESPN’s Women’s Bracketology.
Creighton defeated Georgetown 70-68 in overtime when the teams met in Omaha on Jan. 8. The Bluejays are led by sophomore forward Audrey Faber, who scores 13.1 points per game, and redshirt senior guard Marissa Janning, who averages 11 per game.
The Hoyas are focused on stopping Faber, Janning and the rest of the Bluejays offense, according to Adair.
“We talk about that’s who we want to be as a team, we want to hold opponents under their average, keep them to 50, and the stats show that when we do we have success,” Adair said.
The statistics do support Adair’s point, as the Hoyas are 0-5 when they allow their opponents to score at least 70 points and 5-0 when they hold them under 70.
The game against Providence on Friday tips off at noon before Georgetown faces Creighton on Sunday at 1 p.m. Both games are set to take place in McDonough Arena and will be broadcasted on the Big East Digital Network.