Treated to the rare luxury of playing a smaller team, the Georgetown women's basketball team overwhelmed Fairleigh Dickinson with a pressing defense for a 77-70 victory and the championship of the first Hoya Invitational last night at McDonough Gymnasium.
Abbie Dillon, the tournament's MVP, led the Hoyas with a game-high 24 points and also had 12 rebounds. Diane Toliver, a freshman from St. Anthony's High School, had an excellent game in coming off the bench. She finished with 11 points, six assists and three steals and helped turn the game around for Georgetown.
The Hoyas (8-4) were trailing, 16-12, midway through the first half when Coach Frank Carr called a timeout to settle Georgetown's helter-skelter offense. He did so by reorganizing the 2-1-2 zone defense.
"We were trying to keep them from getting the ball inside," he said. "So I had our guards press the ball outside every chance they could get."
It was an appropriate strategy, since the Hoyas usually play three guards at a time.The Georgetown guards -- Dillon, Toliver, K.C. Comerford and Erin Reed -- consistently forced turnovers by FDU (14-9) and took a 42-30 lead at halftime.
The teams traded baskets for the first six minutes of the second half before Georgetown again got its running game going. A 17-6 spurt gave the Hoyas a 70-47 lead with 7:26 left, a margin that was cut substantially by Georgetown's own carelessness late in the game.
"By forcing them on defense, it got our own offense going," said Dillon, the Hoyas' senior cocaptain. "We started running and moving without the ball and things fell into place."
Boston University defeated American 78-68, in the consolation game.