Late game heroics surge Blue Demons past Georgetown as DePaul women pick up fifth straight


Steve Woltmann | DePaul Athletics

Freshman guard Tara Daye drives past Georgetown towards the basket in DePaul’s win Sunday.

DePaul hosted its first Big East home game at Wintrust Arena on Sunday for the 2022-23 season. The Georgetown Hoyas came in to test DePaul, but a complete team effort resulted in the Blue Demons picking up their second conference win by a score of 80-71. 

Following the Howard game on Dec. 12, the question lingered as to what the time table was for sophomore Aneesah Morrow’s injury and how many games she might miss. What was thought to be a week-to-week injury didn’t even keep Morrow out for a single game. 

The bone bruise on Morrow’s right knee did not limit the star from anything that she wasn’t capable of doing already. She finished with a game high 28-points, 11 rebounds and seemed to be unaffected by the injury as she played 38 minutes, tied for most in the game. 

As both teams exchanged runs, DePaul was able to learn some things about their team. 

“Georgetown is a good ball club that is going to beat some [teams] in the Big East this year. We knew we were going to have a tough game against a good Georgetown team,” said head coach Doug Bruno. “I’m just proud of the way the players were able to have the resiliency and toughness to make the plays necessary on both sides of the ball.”  

Junior Kelsey Ransom and freshman Kennedy Fauntleroy for the Hoyas challenged DePauls guard on both ends of the floor. Junior guard Darrione Rogers struggled shooting, going 3-10, while freshman guards Tara Daye and Zaria Hurston both finished with zero points and struggled defensively guarding Georgetown’s Ransom and Fauntleroy. 

One thing that prevailed for DePaul throughout the course of the game was its ability to get to the free throw line and knock down shots, while also getting their three point shooters the open space to knock down timely threes.

As a team, the Blue Demons shot 75.8% from the line, going 25-33. Morrow and Rogers together shot 28 free throws, accounting for nearly half the duo’s individual scoring. 

With the game intensifying in the second half, DePaul called upon different players to step up and deliver. 

In a game in which Bruno was not provided a single bench point, all five of his starters finished with double figures and were asked to play more minutes than usual. Bruno spoke about the lack of bench points as the season moves forward. 

“You can’t play scared, and the coach is scared. We lost two starting guards to start the season, and two freshman guards that are really good aren’t able to play,” Bruno said. “At the same time, there have been many teams in the history of college basketball – men and women – that have had great season’s with five players. So if we have to play five we are going to play five.” 

Georgetown was able to contain Morrow in the second half, holding her to seven points in the final two quarters. It was then that seniors Anaya Peoples and Kendall Holmes gave DePaul the fourth quarter scoring needed to secure the victory. 

A combination of threes on back-to-back possessions, complimented by a Peoples and-one conversion, ignited the Blue Demons in the final minutes. Anaya poured in 10-points in fourth, while Holmes made two clutch three and added six in the quarter. 

“I was just playing basketball… I trusted [my teammates] and I just wanted to win. Whatever is necessary to win, I’ll do.” Peoples said. 

The Blue Demons (9-3, 2-0) schedule only gets tougher as they invite the Louisville Cardinals (9-4) to Wintrust Arena on Wednesday, Dec. 21 for a 7:30 CST tip-off. 

Louisville will be the last of DePaul’s non-conference schedule and are likely to test the Blue Demons in a tough game. The Cardinals started the season ranked No. 6 in the country, but with their struggles at the start, have recently fallen out of the Top-25. A resurgence has the Cardinals on a four-game win streak ahead of Wednesday’s matchup.