- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 8, 2012

On a night with more empty seats than occupied seats at McDonough Arena, two young Georgetown fans danced atop the bleachers waving a sign that read, “Georgetown is Beast of the Big East.”

While some fans opted to skip the game that lacked a major conference rivalry — and the men’s team happened to be playing Syracuse at the same time — the two youngsters were undeterred by a matchup between their No. 14 Hoyas and unranked Seton Hall. At 0-10 in the conference, the Pirates were one of two winless teams in Big East play going into Wednesday night’s game. On the surface, the 7-3 Hoyas would seem to have this one in the bag.

When the teams left the court, the small crowd got more of a game than expected as Georgetown held on for a 56-51 win.

“I watched a lot of tape of Seton Hall and I really never thought that they were an 0-10 team,” said Hoyas coach Terri Williams-Flournoy.  “They have some really good guards, they play extremely hard, and as long as you let them stay in the game, it’s almost like the better they got.”

The Hoyas looked like the “Beast of the Big East” in the first half as they shot 46.2 percent while holding Seton Hall to 28 percent shooting and led 32-19 going into the break.  The second half proved to be a different story.

Five minutes into the second, Pirates junior Brittany Morris cut the Georgetown lead to 34-29. The Hoyas managed to take the largest lead of the night at 50-34 but Seton Hall would get within 50-44 with 2:48 to play on three free throws from its leading scorer, Jasmine Crew.

With the win in reach, Seton Hall looked for every opportunity to take its first lead of the night, hoping that would be enough to end its 12-game losing streak.

Two free throws by Sugar Rodgers and two by Rubylee Wright restored a double-digit lead with 1:35 remaining and secured the win for Georgetown (19-5, 8-3 Big East).

Crew finished with 20 points to pace Seton Hall (7-18, 0-11).

The Hoyas shot a mere 29.2 percent to the Pirates’ 40.9 in the second half, but Georgetown would squeak by with the win thanks to 23 points from Rodgers and nine from junior Sydney Wilson.

Tia Magee, the Hoyas’ second-leading scorer, struggled, hitting just one of 10 shots from the floor and scoring four points.

“Today was just one of those days that are in your nightmares,” said Magee.  “I couldn’t make a layup, I couldn’t make a shot, I couldn’t pass, I couldn’t do anything.”

Williams-Flournoy added that the close game can also be attributed to the Pirates’ ability to play against the famous Georgetown press.

“They spread us out and knew exactly where to attack us at in our press so that we couldn’t get to them and trap them,” she said.

Things get much tougher for Georgetown on Saturday afternoon, with a road game against No. 3 Connecticut and its 98-game home winning streak.