Late Rally Falls Short as GW Women's Hoops Falls to Charlotte, 61-60
49ers Tally Game-Winner with 11.5 Seconds Remaining
Jan. 14, 2012
WASHINGTON - Trailing nearly the entire game, the George Washington women's basketball team rallied back from an eight-point deficit with five minutes remaining to take the lead with under a minute to go, but Charlotte guard Ayanna Holmes nailed the game-winner with 11.5 seconds left in the 49ers' 61-60 win Saturday afternoon in Atlantic 10 Conference action at the Smith Center.
The Colonials (8-9, 1-2 A-10) were down, 55-47, with 5:06 remaining, but used an 11-2 run over the next 3:19 to take a 58-57 lead, their first since the score was 4-2 just 92 seconds into the game. Senior Tara Booker and junior Danni Jackson combined for nine points during the spurt, but it was junior Megan Nipe that put GW on top with a jumper from the left wing at the 1:47 mark.
Holmes put Charlotte back on top with a layup on its next possession. On their ensuing possession, the Colonials, who were outrebounded 46-30 in the game, came down with two offensive boards after a pair of missed shots, and Jackson drained a long jumper from the left baseline with 37 seconds left to give the hosts a 60-59 lead.
After a 49ers' timeout, it was Holmes again with what proved to be the game-winner, hitting a tough runner in the lane with 11 seconds on the clock. GW called a timeout, but Charlotte guard Jai Forney came up with a steal just after the inbounds, and the 49ers (11-6, 3-0 A-10) held on for their fifth straight victory.
The Colonials struggled from the floor to start the game, connecting on just two of their first 13 attempts, but they stayed close by forcing 13 first-half turnovers. GW held Charlotte scoreless for nearly five minutes at the end of the period before Forney came up with a swipe and drove to the other end of the court for a layup as time expired to give the visitors a 28-25 lead at the break.
The 49ers led, 40-32, with 14:29 remaining before Booker scored five straight points, sparking a 9-2 GW run that pulled the Colonials within one, 42-41, just 3:20 later. Freshman Chakecia Miller recorded back-to-back steals to cap the spurt, both leading to layups on fast breaks.
But Charlotte responded with a 10-2 run of its own to regain an eight-point advantage , 51-43, at the 8:10 mark, and the teams traded baskets for three minutes before Booker started GW's last rally.
Booker led GW with 15 points and 11 rebounds, posting her second double-double of the season, and she added team highs of four steals and two blocks. Jackson finished with 14 points, while junior Shi-Heria Shipp chipped in 10 points and three assists. All nine Colonials to see the court scored at least two points in the game.
Charlotte was led by forward Jennifer Hailey with 14 points and 14 boards, while Forney totaled 11 points, eight rebounds and five assists.
The 49ers dominated inside, scoring 34 points in the paint and grabbing 19 offensive rebounds, which led to 22 second-chance points.
After shooting just 29 percent in the first half, GW bounced back to make 45.2 percent of its attempts in the second period and finished at 37.1 percent for the game. The Colonials also capitalized on 19 Charlotte turnovers for 18 points.
The Colonials return to action on Wednesday, when they visit Atlantic 10 rival Rhode Island for a 7 p.m. tipoff.