A Natalie Butler buzzer beater with three seconds left lifted Georgetown past the Princeton women’s basketball team 66-64 Saturday afternoon in Washington, D.C. With the loss the Tigers drop to 2-2, while the Hoyas reach .500 at 2-2 as well.
Princeton was led by Kristen Helmstetter’s 13 points, including three treys, and Taylor Williams’ 10 points. Williams went 5-for-6 from the field and scored in double figures for the second time in as many games.
In a tale of two halves, Princeton rebounded after a slow shooting first half to force the game to go to the wire.
The Hoyas forced a quick tempo and opened on an 11-3 run, before seven Helmstetter points, including a triple at 9:25, guided Princeton to its first lead, 14-13. It would be the Tigers’ lone lead over the first half.
As Princeton was unable to shake its shooting woes Georgetown capitalized to carry a 30-25 lead into halftime.
Much credit was due to the Tiger defensive effort, allowing them to stay within range and prevent Georgetown from ever taking off on significant scoring runs.
Alex Wheatley led the first half defense with three defensive boards and three blocks, as Princeton made 16 of its 27 boards on the defensive end and limited the Hoyas to six second chance points.
Wheatley finished matching a career-high with her three first half blocks, along with adding nine points and a game-high eight rebounds.
A pair of Amanda Berntsen baskets guided Princeton on a 8-2 run to take its first lead since the opening half, 47-46 at 9:50, and from there both sides would trade the lead until a Tiger 10-1 run lifted Princeton to a 59-54 advantage with five minutes to play.
Princeton was unable to sustain its rally and the Hoyas countered with a 3-0 run to take its fifth lead, 64-61 with 2:05 left. Blake Dietrick responded with a triple from the right corner, but the Tigers were unable to take control on the final offensive possession which ultimately set up Butler’s game-winner.
The Tigers shot 46.9 percent in the second half to finish shooting 34.8 percent (23-for-66) from the field to Georgetown’s 41.7 percent (25-for-60). The Hoyas held a slight 47-42 rebounding margin and made 15 points from the stripe off Princeton’s 25 fouls.
The Tigers return home to host St. Joseph’s on Tuesday, Nov. 26 at 5:30 p.m. in a basketball doubleheader at Jadwin Gym.