George Washington Never Trailed in 64 – 54 Win Over La Salle
WILMINGTON, DE 3/3/2022 –
The La Salle Explorers came into the tournament with high hopes and expectations. The Explorers earned the #5 seed, but the trip lasted one day as the George Washington Colonials eliminated La Salle 64 – 54. GW goes to the quarterfinal round to play #4 VCU.
“It’s obviously not the result we were hoping for today,” said La Salle Coach Mountain MacGillivray. “Everybody in the locker room thought we were going to make a run in this tournament and challenge for a title. To go home in the first round, it’s disappointing, tough way to end the season.”
A Matter of Making Shots
It was a matter of shooting. The Colonials made theirs, while the Explorers did not. It was especially evident in the first half when the Explorers made 21% of their shots, and only 1 of 13 from beyond the arc. Meanwhile the Colonials were good on 46% from the floor, and 4 of 6 from distance. Overall GW drained 8 of 11 three-pointers, compared to 5 of 25 for the opponent. La Salle was happy with the selection, but those shots did not fall. Something that happened during the season.
“That’s us,” MacGillivray said. “A fan yelled stop shooting three’s. Not gonna happen, that’s what we do. We shot 20% from three and 32% overall. That three-point percentage is better when you add that extra point in there. We didn’t have a good shooting day.”
La Salle Turns Up the Defense and Creates Offense
In the third quarter the Colonials continued the good outside shooting and won the quarter 19 – 13. In the fourth quarter the La Salle defense became more effective. Shots from the inside began to fall and brought the team to within 59 – 52 on a three-pointer by Molly Masciantonio with 1:41 on the clock.
“We had a couple of steals and were all over the place,” said Masciantonio. That helped us get a little more momentum. It’s upsetting that we had to get to that point. If we had a couple more minutes we could have gotten there, but time ran out.”
La Salle had 10 steals for the game with Masciantonio getting 4 swipes.
George Washington got the ball in the hands of graduate point guard Kyara Frames to direct the offense. La Salle was forced to foul. The Colonials eventually put the game away from the foul line, but left the door open making 6 of 14 from the line. The Explorers got to within seven points.
“I’ve been in situations with the ball and they are trapping,” said Frames who scored a team-high 14 points and handed out 7 assists. “Coach does a good job of prepping us for late game situations.”
Mayowa Taiwo led GW with 10 points and a game-high 10 rebounds. Sheslanie Laureano 12 points.
Masciantonio had a team-high 16 points. Kayla Spruill scored 11 points and fell one rebound shy of a double-double. Gabby Crawford added 10 points.
La Salle ends the season 16 – 12. Will more games await? Hard to say, but with everybody back the team can keep those expectations high for next year.
Written By: Glenn Papazian