Another strong first half, another halftime lead, another second-half collapse. This time it was the Hoya offense that failed to show up after intermission, as Georgetown (13-7, 3-4) could muster only 12 second-half points in a 50-39 loss against No. 21 Pittsburgh (15-4, 5-2).Despite playing solid defense throughout the entire game, holding the Panthers to a season-low, the Hoyas’ offense stumbled its way to a season-low of their own and had Head Coach Terri Williams-Flournoy struggling for answers.

“I have no idea, no idea,” Williams-Flournoy said. “Didn’t make shots. That was one thing. That doesn’t help.”

“You can’t score 12 points in 20 minutes. You’re not going to win any ball games like that,” she added.

Georgetown outplayed Pittsburgh early in the game, leading for much of the first half. Senior guard Shavonte Zellous, third in the nation in scoring, managed only four first-half points on 1-of-6 shooting and got into foul trouble from an incident late in the half. Senior guard Karee Houlette pulled up for a deep three-pointer to give the Hoyas a 27-23 lead. On the ensuing Pittsburgh, Zellous picked up her second foul on a loosed ball scramble with 17 seconds left. Templers flared, and after a bit of shouting and shoving, Zellous and Georgetown’s fifth-year senior forward Krystle Hatton received coinciding technicals, taking Zellous’ foul count to three heading into the break.

The Hoyas’ advantage would soon evaporate, however, as Georgetown’s next points would not come until a three-pointer by Houlette with 12:11 to go. The much-needed trey came after Pittsburgh had gone on a 13-0 run to take the lead and control of the game. During that period, the Hoyas missed a pair of free throws, shot 0-for-7 from the field and turned the ball over six times. By the time Georgetown scored its second basket of the half, with 7:26 remaining, they had missed another six shots and fallen behind by double digits.

Pittsburgh cruised the rest of the way, as Georgetown never got closer than within six. Zellous finished with 19 points to lead all scorers, while senior guard Xenia Stewart and sophomore guard Shayla Scott adding 11 and 10 points, respectively. The Panthers shot 30.5 percent on the game.

The Georgetown offense, particularly in the second half, was flummoxed by nearly everything to do with offense. Until freshman forward Tia McBride found Hatton for a jumper with just over a minute left in the game, junior guard Shanice Fuller – who shot 1-for-11 – was the only Hoya with an assist. Houlette was the only Georgetown player to reach double figures, but even she did not shoot well, shooting 3-of-10. As a team, the Blue and Gray shot an abysmal 4-for-26 from the field after the break. Hatton shot 4-of-8 from the floor, but not so well from the charity stripe, where she managed to go only 1-for-5. In addition, the Panthers held a 48-34 rebounding advantage over the Hoyas.

Seeing as the Hoyas are in an offensive slump, the possible return of junior forward Jaleesa Butler would help greatly. Georgetown’s leading scorer had averaged 26.5 points the previous two games but suffered an ankle injury after an easy layup with 5:29 remaining in the first half. The severity of the injury was unknown and her status for the Connecticut game Saturday is uncertain.

But even without their leading scorer, the rest of the Hoyas must step up, a point that Williams-Flournoy emphasized after the game.

“She goes down from what she’s been doing for us, but, but that’s not, somebody’s gotta step up. Somebody has to step up,” Williams-Flournoy said.

Things certainly won’t be getting any easier for the Hoyas. Top ranked and undefeated Connecticut pays Georgetown a visit Saturday. Tip-off is scheduled for 3 p.m. at McDonough Gymnasium.

Have a reaction to this article? Write a letter to the editor.

Comments are closed.