By: Keith Raad – Sports Editor
Jonquel Jones and the entire George Washington University women’s basketball team took a page out of Buzz Lightyear’s quote book.
Sunday’s rematch against GW was Dayton’s chance for revenge after losing 69-66 at home to open up Atlantic 10 Conference play Jan. 4. But when the dust settled, the famous space toy’s words echoed off of the walls of the Charles E. Smith Center.
“Revenge is not an idea that we have on my planet.”
All game, it was GW’s world.
Jones, the junior forward transfer from Clemson University, and Naismith Award finalist, dropped her 14th double-double of the season with an 18-point, 18-rebound effort. Though she took 19 shots, her supporting cast stole most of the show. The Colonials dished out 20 assists on 26 made baskets, a number the team has bested just five times this season.
Point guards Chakecia Miller, Lauren Chase, and Brianna Cummings combined for 12 assists. While Jones was happy with her points, sophomore forward Caira Washington popped in 11 points and snagged 10 rebounds.
On the boards, George Washington outrebounded Dayton by margin of 21, the highest surrendered by head coach Jim Jabir’s club all season.
“We’ve got to develop some level of toughness and fight,” Jabir said. “What happened today was that they had some bigs and they have some kids who play really hard all the time and we’re very selective.”
While GW’s offense flowed through the immense number of assists on field goals, Dayton staggered to only assist on eight of their 19 buckets, also the lowest number of assists this season. The 56-point effort, inthe 67-56 loss, was Dayton’s lowest accumulation all year.
“Right now I’m just very disappointed, hurt,” Jabir said. “I think they’re a great team, I really do, but I think we hurt ourselves more than they hurt us. You can’t win championships when you do that.”
When the Colonials edged out the Flyers in early January, it snapped Dayton’s 31-game home winning streak, the longest active streak at the time.
In that game, the Flyers turned the ball over 23 times, and were out-scored 36-30 in the paint. The feeling in the locker room was one of discontent and disappointment. Players were not playing with the same intensity, expressed personally by senior forward Ally Malott.
“I wasn’t too happy with myself after the GW game,” Malott said following a win over Davidson College Jan. 7. “I know that my team needs me to be aggressive.”
Against the Colonials in January, Malott, who averages 16 points per game, scored 13 while shooting just 1-of-4 from three-point range. GW limited Malott to a 25 percent clip from the field and only 12 points in the second go-around.
“We lacked consistency and it kills us at times,” Jabir said. “We need to rely on certain people to do certain things and we didn’t have that today.”
After losing the inside battle in game one to a GW team that was 0-of-4 from long-range in January, Dayton aimed to take away the paint on Sunday. The Flyers edged GW in paint points 32-30, but the Colonials used the three-point line as the great equalizer.
George Washington shot 5-of-11 from deep in the first half, and the lead was enough in the second 20 minutes, to stave off a Dayton comeback.
Down by 10 at the break, Dayton put their worst half behind them, and showed fight in the second.
“In the first half we weren’t as tough as we were in the second half,” Jabir said. “You’re in a double-digit deficit to come out of the half and we do it to ourselves.”
The Flyers got to the free throw line in the second half adding 12 of a possible 16 freebies, but managed only seven baskets from the field. George Washington, however, added 11 field goals.
“It was both ends,” Jabir said. “Consistency [lacked] on both ends.”
With a 17-5, 8-2 record in conference play, Dayton matches up with the University of Richmond 7 p.m. Wednesday and St. Joseph’s University noon on Sunday.