Sophomore forward Tabatha Richardson-Smith tied her career-high of five triples while scoring 22 points as the Seton Hall women’s basketball team outlasted Georgetown, 73-62, inside Walsh Gymnasium on Saturday.
Five Pirates scored in double-figures in a game for the first time this season as The Hall earned its second Big East win.
The Pirates recorded 31 points off 29 turnovers from the Hoyas, who now stand at 7-11 on the season.
“We thought our press could make them (Georgetown) uncomfortable,” Pirates head coach Tony Bozzella said. “We knew that we could not play half-court basketball with them.”
Georgetown’s Katie McCormick scored the first nine points for Georgetown and the Pirates trailed 8-3 at the first media timeout. Then, it was junior forward Bra’Shey Ali who came alive for The Hall and revved up the offense with four straight points.
A three-pointer by Seton Hall freshman wing Teresa Kucera made it 11-9 in favor of the Pirates as the triple was part of a run of eight consecutive points.
Later in the half, junior guards Ka-Deidre Simmons and Alexis Brown put together a pair of lay-ins in just 30 seconds as Seton Hall held a 25-16 advantage with 5:04 left in the first stanza. The Pirates compiled 21 points off turnovers in the first 20 minutes and carried in a nine-point lead into the locker room.
Richardson-Smith continued to do what she did all day, hitting shots on the perimeter after Simmons and Brown took it inside and kicked it out. Simmons compiled one of her eight dishes with a pass five seconds into the second half as Richardson-Smith knocked down a three to make it a 37-25 game.
After Dominique Vitalis cut Seton Hall’s lead to just eight with 14:25 to go in regulation, Richardson-Smith knocked down a three less than a minute later to cushion the Pirates’ lead to 46-35.
While Simmons only shot 3-for-12 from the field, it was Brown who went 4-for-8 from the field and ended up with a solid 10 points and six assists. A lay-in by Brown gave SHU a 51-37 lead with just over 10 minutes to play, and the closest that Georgetown would get from there was seven.
With two minutes left, it was all but over, but The Hall made its free throws at the right time.
“It was important to finish the way we did today,” Bozzella said. “Playing 40 hard minutes is something that we’ve talked a lot about.”
Simmons came up with eight free throws in closing time as the Pirates went 10-for-10 in the last two minutes from the charity stripe to seal the 11-point victory.
Simmons had 14 and four boards along with her eight assists while Ali finished with 13 points, 10 rebounds, and five steals. Georgetown did grab 50 rebounds to Seton Hall’s 37, but the Pirates used their fast-paced style to avoid getting into half-court basketball.
When asked about Xavier, who The Hall will face on Tuesday, Bozzella said, “They’ve been all over the place. We have to be ready for the challenge, but this is a team that only scored 26 points in a loss to Cincinnati, yet beat one of the best in the Big East in St. John’s, 70-65.”
The Pirates will be starting a two-game road swing that features a contest at the Cintas Center against the Musketeers and Providence.
Tuesday’s tip-off in Cincinnati is slated for 7 p.m., as the Pirates face off with the team right in front of them currently in the standings. The Musketeers are in the sixth spot currently with the Pirates right behind.
John Fanta can be reached at email@example.com.