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1/18/2024 10:56 am  #1

GW versus St. Louis Game Thread

Next up:                               St. Louis Billikens (SLU)
Time:                                    January 20, 2024; 2 PM (ET)
Venue:                                 Charles E Smith Center – Washington, DC
2022-23 Record:                 17-18 (10-6 in A10)
2024 Projection:                 3rd
Current Record:                 7-12   
OOC Record:                      
A10 Record:                       
Common OOC:                  Southern Illinois University (75-67 loss at SIU)
Last Time Out:                   76-64 win over GW in 2022-2023 (at SLU)
Broadcast:                         ESPN+ 

Opponent Summary: Fresh off their abysmal performance in Dayton, GW comes home to host the St. Louis Billikens in a Saturday afternoon matchup. After coming out of nowhere last season to win the A10 tourney and automatic bid to the NCAAs, SLU Was projected to be one of the top teams in the conference this year. So far, it hasn’t turned out that way. After a 5-8 finish in their OOC season, the Billikens, with their loss to George Mason on Wednesday, are 2-4 on the A10. St. Louis is led by preseason All A10 selections Kyla McMakin and Julia Martinez. McMakin comes into the game averaging 16.4 ppg, while Martinez chips in 9.1 ppg and a league leading 6.3 assists per game. Peyton Kennedy (13.8 ppg) and Brooklyn Gray (11.3 ppg) are also capable of big scoring games. As a team, St. Louis averages 73 ppg on 42.7% field goal accuracy and 31.5 % from 3-point range. Their defense has allowed 76 ppg.
About the Game: St. Louis is not the same team that won last year’s A10 tourney. The graduation of Brooke Flowers, a shot blocking phenom, has left a void in the middle of the Billiken defense. On offense, an efficient and balanced attack is likely to challenge GW defensively. Like GW’s Robertson, McMakin is a high-volume shooter, so limiting her attempts is critical. On the inside, 6’2” Marcavia Shavers has had recent success in A10 play, but the bulk of the Billikens’ scoring will come from their backcourt. The Revs are still looking for answers offensively and have yet to find a way to consistently put the ball in the basket. Brown, Innis, and Lok have to stay out of foul trouble because the substitutes struggle to score, and both Taiwo and Durant have to play better on both ends of the court. Every game moving forward will be a challenge for GW. Are the Revs up to it?
With George Mason on deck, things only get more difficult and any signs of improvement are welcome. Maybe a little home cooking will help.


1/20/2024 4:15 pm  #2

Re: GW versus St. Louis Game Thread

Final Result: GW offensive woes continue in 66-56 loss to St. Louis.

The Revs started the game with a focus on the inside as St. louis was denying the ball to Robertson. Taiwo and Brown each had a pair of early field goals to help GW keep pace and trail only 9-8 at the media timeout. Despite strong defense By the Revs, one empty GW possession after another allowed the Billikens to build a 19-10 lead to end the 1st quarter. Things did not get better in the 2nd period, as four missed inside shots by Durant propelled St. Louis to a big run and helped stretch their lead to 37-22 at the half. Once again, numerous missed layups contributed to a poor 25.7% from the field, and allowed St. Louis to get many scores in transition. Brown had 10 early points, but Robertson was scoreless on just 3 attempts from the field. GW bolted out to a 10-2 run to start the 3rd and force a St. Louis timeout. After the TO, GW could not maintain the momentum and trailed 52-41 to end the period. The offense sputtered as several missed layups allowed the Billikens to maintain a comfortable margin. GW closed out the game with a 15-14 4th quarter, but it wasn’t enough to dent the big Billikens lead. Taiwo had her best game, with a 13/11 double-double and Lok led all GW scorers with 19 points. Brown chipped in with 12 points.

Despite forcing 20 St. Louis turnovers, GW could only convert them for 11 points, thus missing numerous opportunities to get back in the game. Although GW managed to shoot 54% in the second half, it wasn’t enough to offset St. Louis’s free throw advantage (15 made FTs to GW’s 7), and when GW needed baskets, poor passes or bad ball handling led to bad shots or shots not taken at all. The Billikens did a great job in holding Robertson to just 1-6 on field goals. Conversely, GW could not do the same with McMakin, who finished with 21 points.

With George Mason coming up and steamrolling through most of their A10 opponents so far, this performance is not a good sign. Only 4 short days before that game. What will the coaches do now?

     Thread Starter

1/20/2024 4:47 pm  #3

Re: GW versus St. Louis Game Thread

There's not much else to say at this point. This team just doesn't have the talent required to win games, the offense is brutal, and that's made harder when Robertson isn't 100%. Digging a big hole isn't something this team can recover from. How many times has GW won the second quarter against the other team all year? Mayowa seemed to have a nice game though. Like that McCombs is playing Durant off the bench now to give Taiwo the space to operate. Hopefully Maren is able to bounce back soon - several games now missing layups that aren't even contested and then compounding things by fouling on the other end.

It's just the simple things with this team though. SLU passed the ball significantly better than GW. The Revs seemed to have the right idea on passes, but they are executed unbelievably poorly - usually off-balanced, and players are never on the same page. That's a problem when the team is supposed to be an experienced unit.


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