March 15, 2018
WASHINGTON - The Georgetown University women's basketball team will host the University of Delaware Blue Hens at McDonough Arena on Friday at 7 p.m. in the first round of the Women's National Invitation Tournament (WNIT). The Hoyas are currently 15-15 on the season and finished with a 9-9 record in the BIG EAST Conference, earning the No. 6 seed at the 2018 BIG EAST Women's Basketball Tournament and advancing to the semifinals for the first time in 19 seasons.
This marks Georgetown's third-consecutive postseason berth, and the first under first-year Head Coach James Howard. The Blue & Gray has not advanced beyond the first round since 2009 when the squad made it to the WNIT quarterfinals before falling to Boston College, 65-56. Overall, this is the eighth appearance in the WNIT for the Blue & Gray. The program is 4-7 all-time in the postseason tournament. Georgetown's last NCAA berth was a trip to the NCAA Tournament Second Round in 2012.
The Hoyas had an outstanding end to the regular season with the team going 4-2 in its final six games. GU defeated the top four seeds in the conference tournament at different points in the season. Georgetown faced third-seeded Villanova in the BIG EAST Tournament quarterfinals after earning a first-round bye. The Blue & Gray defeated the Wildcats, 63-58, to advance to the semifinals before falling to the eventual champion DePaul.
BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year Dionna White (Baltimore, Md./Milford Mill) leads Georgetown with 18.3 ppg on the season as well as 6.4 rpg and 83 steals. She was also a First Team All-BIG EAST honoree and is the BIG EAST leader in steals.
Senior forward Cynthia Petke (Yaounde, Cameroon/-/Chipola College) is averaging 13.6 ppg and 10.3 rpg making her one of just two players in the BIG EAST to average a double-double. Petke has posted 18 double-doubles this season. She was the BIG EAST Most Improved Player and earned All-BIG EAST Honorable Mention.
Senior guard Mikayla Venson (Arlington, Va./Yorktown/Virginia) is third on the squad with 13.6 ppg to round out the top three scorers for the Blue & Gray. She also has 2.1 ppg and has hit 51 3-pointers this season.
Delaware (19-12) finished fifth in the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) with an 11-7 record and advanced to the CAA Tournament semifinals before falling to top-seeded Drexel, 58-53, in overtime. Blue Hen Head Coach Natasha Adair is no stranger to the Georgetown program as she departed the Hilltop in May to take the head job at Delaware. Georgetown Head Coach James Howard was her top assistant and Adair has a pair of former GU coaches on her staff at Delaware.
The Hoyas are 4-3 all-time against the Blue Hens and this will be their first meeting in the postseason. GU boasts a 2-1 record at home. Last year, Georgetown defeated Delaware on the road, 54-46. The last meeting at home was a 61-50 GU victory during the 2015-16 season.
Georgetown is one of seven BIG EAST teams participating in postseason play. Both Seton Hall and St. John's will join the Hoyas in the WNIT while DePaul, Marquette, Villanova and Creighton earned spots in the NCAA Tournament.
Tickets for the game can be purchased through Georgetown's Athletic Ticket Office or at the gate. Georgetown students are free of charge. Tickets are also free for all Georgetown University faculty and staff who present a valid GOCard at the ticket table on game day. Live stats and a webcast featuring Monica McNutt will be available at www.GUHoyas.com.
The winner of Friday's game will then face the winner of Miami (Ohio) University and Duquesne University.