Women’s Basketball Improves to 12-1 Over Last 13 Games


Courtesy of Olivia Pasquale/Villanovan Photography

Maddy Siegrist (above) recorded her third consecutive 30 point game

Tyler Moore, Staff Writer

The Villanova women’s basketball team cruised by Georgetown on Sunday afternoon by a score of 76-57. The win marks the Wildcats’ 12th win in their last 13 games, giving them a 15-6 record overall, 9-3 in Big East play.

Junior forward Maddy Siegrist scored 32 points in the contest with 14 rebounds, marking her 30th career double-double and her third straight 30 point game. Sophomore forward Lior Garzon followed with 22 points. 

For the Hoyas, graduate guard Milan Bolden-Morris led the team with 14 points, while senior forward Jillian Archer and sophomore guard Kelsey Ransom scored 11 and 10 points, respectively.

‘Nova had a dominant first quarter to create a solid cushion for the rest of the game. A 24-4 Villanova run combined with a five minute scoring drought from the Hoyas created an opportunity for Siegrist and Garzon to get an early start, putting the Wildcats ahead 30-9 entering the second quarter. In the first frame alone, Siegrist went a dominant seven-for-ten on field goals while Garzon went three-for-five on three pointers.

The Hoyas quickly turned it around in the second quarter. As the ‘Cats went on a scoring drought of their own, Georgetown made several threes and went four-for-four on field goals towards the end of the quarter. The Hoyas were able to hold ‘Nova to just nine points, cutting the deficit to a 39-25 Villanova lead at halftime.

“I felt we weren’t communicating on the defensive end,” Villanova head coach Denise Dillon said about Georgetown’s quick response. “We were allowing their intensity to dictate what we were doing as opposed to us taking a stand on what we wanted to do defensively.”

The first half was a historic one for Siegrist, who has become a familiar face in the Villanova record books. Entering the game, Siegrist needed just 16 points to be the ninth player in Villanova women’s basketball history to score 1,500 career points. After Siegrist achieved it in the second quarter, Dillon expressed how amazed she is by Siegrist’s growth as a player. 

“Obviously the points show on the stat sheet, but there’s just so much more to her game and how she’s impacting each game for us and the program in general,” Dillon said. “It’s the big picture and she really gets it, she’s understanding the importance of representing this great university and there’s nothing more gratifying than to see her rewarded for it.”

Siegrist, on the other hand, downplayed the accomplishment and gave credit to who she thought deserved it. 

“I didn’t even know until Lior [Garzon] just told me in the locker room,” Siegrist said with a grin. “I mean, that’s nice, you try not to think about stuff like that. I’ve had a lot of great teammates and I’m fortunate to have played with a lot of good players.”

The third quarter saw much of the same pressure and dominance from the Hoyas. While it appeared to be a back and forth battle of dominant field goals and effective defense on both sides, the Hoyas once again outscored the ‘Cats. Georgetown chipped away at ‘Nova’s lead by taking the quarter 22-20 and getting as close as nine at one point, but freshman guard Lucy Olsen made a three pointer at the buzzer to put the ‘Cats up 59-47 entering the last quarter.

The final ten minutes of the game were all Villanova, adding 17 points and limiting the Hoyas to just ten. Georgetown got within nine just two minutes into the remaining period, but the ‘Cats turned on the jets and closed it out. Graduate forward Brianna Herlihy and sophomore guard Bella Runyan were crucial in the remaining minutes to hold the lead.

Looking ahead, Villanova has its most difficult tests of the season, starting with a trip to the top seed in the Big East and No. 10 ranked UConn on Wednesday. It’s a stretch that means a lot for a team with serious NCAA Tournament hopes.

“I think we put ourselves in the right position to get ready to face the top teams,” Dillon said. “You don’t look ahead to all of your games but you know you have UConn, Marquette, Seton Hall— we got three tough ones so you take one at a time.”

Dillon reflected on her squad’s hard fought victory against Georgetown, noting the challenges they will face against the Huskies.

“You see games like this, just trying to make adjustments and recognize if you have lapses, teams are gonna take advantage and Georgetown did that just today,” Dillon said. “You can’t have any of those possessions when we’re going up against UConn. I know the team is definitely up to face them, we didn’t get the opportunity to have them here so I think it will tell us a lot about where we actually are in the Big East.”

The game against the Huskies will be televised on SNY at 7 p.m. The ‘Cats then return home on Friday to face Marquette at 7 p.m., which will be televised on FS1.