March 9, 2013
HARTFORD, Conn. - The Georgetown University women's basketball team couldn't stop the hot-handed Villanova University Wildcats (21-9) Saturday evening in the second round of the BIG EAST Championship at the XL Center in Hartford, Conn. The Hoyas fell, 89-58, to finish the season with a mark of 15-16 overall.
It marked the final game for senior shooting guard Sugar Rodgers (Suffolk, Va./King's Fork) who leaves the Hilltop as the most decorated player in Georgetown women's basketball history. On Saturday, she hit another milestone surpassing 2,500 career points and breaking the BIG EAST Championship scoring record with 42 points in the game.
"The record means a lot, I worked hard to get here," said Rodgers. ""It was a great sign of respect (from an opposing coach), and like I said, I worked hard being at Georgetown and in the BIG EAST Conference."
Rodgers is both the career and season leader in points with 2,518 total points as well as scoring 711 points this season to rank first. She ranks second (653), fifth (580) and sixth (574) as well. Additionally, Rodgers is the career leader in 3-pointers with 346 and holds the top four spots in season 3-pointers.
The shooting guard has not been a one-dimensional player leading the program in steals with 326, ranking eighth in assists with 328 and eighth in rebounding pulling down 674 career boards. Rodgers has been a stalwart playing in 130 career games with 129 starts including 104 consecutively.
Rodgers started out scoring Georgetown's first five points, but the Wildcats were hot from beyond the arc hitting five 3-pointers in the first five minutes to take a 17-5 lead. `Nova used a 13-0 run to take a double-digit lead as the Hoyas battled back by looking inside and driving to the basket.
The Blue & Gray worked to defend, but the Wildcats were hot from all over the floor hitting eight 3-pointers in the first 10 minutes.
Villanova led by as much as 21 in the first half, but it was Rodgers who held it together on offense for the Hoyas. The senior scored and dished, but on defense the Blue & Gray couldn't stop `Nova's hot shooting.
At the break, Georgetown trailed, 50-27, stung by 10 3-pointers from the Wildcats. Rodgers scored 18 of GU's 27 points and also posted two boards.
The second half was much of the same as the Wildcats continued to hit from the outside. GU never really found an answer for Villanova who slowed it down not allowing the Hoyas to get back into it.
Rodgers dominated the second half, but she couldn't counter the `Nova offense. The senior left the game to a standing ovation, but was put back in as Villanova Head Coach Harry Perretta instructed a player to foul her allowing Rodgers to go to the line for a chance at the scoring record. The senior hit them both to score 42 points and break the record.
The record was silver lining on a tough 89-58 decision to end the season.
"I need to thank Harry (Perretta), Harry's a class act and he gave her a chance at the end," said Georgetown Head Coach Keith Brown. "What Sugar has meant probably can't be articulated. I love her as a player and I love her like a daughter, words can't explain what she has done for Georgetown. She's meant everything, she put the women's program on the map. She's the essence of greatness."
Rodgers led the way with 42 points, including six 3-pointers, as well as a team-high five rebounds.
Georgetown was outrebounded 30-28 and allowed the Wildcats 51.8 percent shooting from the field as well as 54.8 percent from beyond the arc. `Nova hit 17 3-pointers for the tournament record and Laura Sweeney led the way with 17 points.
The Hoyas finish the season with a mark of 15-16 on the year in Brown's first season at the helm. The squad had success defeating the University of Delaware early in the season and advancing to the semifinals of the Preseason WNIT, but were devastated by injuries.
The team will lose three seniors, including Rodgers, but returns eight players and is bringing in a talented freshman class of six.