March 18, 2012
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) - Fifth-seeded Georgetown faces 12th-seeded Fresno State in a first-round matchup Sunday, which features one of the nation's toughest defenses against one of its most prolific offenses in the Des Moines Regional at Chapel Hill, N.C.
Georgetown (22-8) ranks eighth nationally, allowing just 51.9 points per game, and the only two teams to score at least 70 points on the Hoyas since Jan. 1 are No. 1 seeds in this tournament - Connecticut and Notre Dame.
"The more we can pressure a team and the more we can cause a team to turn the ball over will give us more opportunities to run and be a better transition offensive team," Georgetown coach Terri Williams-Flournoy said. "We play 40 minutes of what we call tenacious defense. Some teams say that they press, but you're only a pressing team if you do it for 40 minutes. ... It really doesn't matter. We will press, and we will press the whole game."
Not that the Hoyas can't score, either. Sugar Rodgers, the only player in school history to make three all-BIG EAST first teams, averaged a league-best 18.9 points, the highest average of any player in Chapel Hill this weekend. But points were hard to come by in their last game, a 39-32 loss to West Virginia in the league quarterfinals.
And they'll surely be tested by a Fresno State scoring machine that cracked the 70-point mark in every game but one during its 12-game winning streak earlier this season.
The Bulldogs (28-5) lost only one Western Athletic Conference game this season, a one-point setback at San Jose State. Behind WAC MVP Ki-Ki Moore, a sophomore who scores nearly 17 points per game, they claimed their fifth straight NCAA berth with a 28-point win over Louisiana Tech in the league title game.
"I think you need to continue to attack Georgetown and not sit back and allow them to pressure you," Fresno State coach Adrian Wiggins said. "That will be fun, because we like to put a lot of pressure on opposing teams as well, so I am excited about that challenge within the game."