Sunday, February 26, 2017

No. 19 DePaul 79, Georgetown 70: January's triple-double leads Blue Demons to a share of the Big East title

                                                         Photo Credit: Geno Green

CHICAGO— Everything came full circle for the No. 19 DePaul Blue Demons (24-6, 16-2 Big East) on senior day as they clinched their fourth straight Big East regular season title with a 79-70 win over the Georgetown Hoyas (17-11, 9-9 Big East) behind Jessica January’s second career triple-double.

The senior went out on a high note in her final game at McGrath-Phillips Arena with 16 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists. As Georgetown crept to within five points at the end of the third quarter, January elevated her game to another level with timely plays on both sides of the ball.

"We started off really well and everyone was ready to play and created the adversity ourselves in the third quarter," January said. "We stuck it out and everyone relaxed and took a deep breath and got easy shots."

Amarah Coleman added a team-high 17 points, on 7-of-9 shooting, highlighted by a 10-point first quarter for the Blue Demons.

The win gave the Blue Demons a share of the Big East regular season title with the Creighton Blue Jays and the top seed in next Saturday’s conference tournament in Milwaukee.

Georgetown forward Faith Woodard was in the zone as she finished with a career-high 31 points, on 9-of-18 shooting and 13-of-16 from the free-throw line.

Georgetown’s top two scorers Dionna White (15.3 points per game) and Dorothy Adomako (15.2 PPG) were held to five points, on 2-of-7 from the field as DePaul’s lead expanded to as many as 21 in the first half. White and Adomako finished with a combined 13 points, on 5-of-23.

"(Georgetown) has three players who can score 30 points on any given night in Dionna White, Dorothy Adomako and Faith Woodard," Bruno said. "Any one of those players can go off and that is the key to defending them. The zone was effective on them as we slowed their tempo in the first half."

DePaul raced out to a 17-4 lead, behind Coleman’s seven points, on 3-of-3 shooting as Georgetown could failed the counter initially. The Blue Demons turned seven Hoya turnovers into 11 points on the other end as they led 31-11 after one quarter.

With a sizable 48-34 lead coming out of halftime, DePaul let the gas off the pedal as a 16-point lead shrunk to five on a 13-2 run from Georgetown over a 4:30 stretch, behind Woodard’s stellar play.

Schulte snapped a 3:14 DePaul scoring drought as she split a pair of free throws. DePaul limped into the final quarter with a 63-58 lead on Georgetown.

The Hoyas could not get any closer as the Blue Demons walked off the floor with a nine-point win.

Both teams will play in the quarterfinal round of the Big East women’s tournament on March 5 as the No. 6-seeded Hoyas face the home host and No. 3-seeded Marquette Golden Eagles at 2:30 p.m., while the top-seeded DePaul Blue Demons’ opponent could be Seton Hall, Providence or Xavier.

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Follow Geno Green on Twitter @TheGenoGreen.