Opponents of the Georgetown women’s basketball team will have not one but two major threats to prepare for when they take on the Hoyas this season. Georgetown’s backcourt duo of junior guard Dorothy Adomako and sophomore guard Dionna White returns to the court after an immensely successful 2015-16 campaign.
In her freshman season, White led Georgetown in five statistical categories: minutes played, free throw shooting percentage, rebounds, assists and steals. Her 77 takeaways and 2.6 steals-per-game ranked first in the Big East. Adomako was not far behind. She trailed just behind White in minutes played and free throw shooting percentage. Adomako also ranked second on the team in rebounds,pulling down six boards per game to White’s 6.1. Her 31 blocks were also the second-most among the Hoyas.
In terms of scoring, Adomako and White each finished last season with a team-high 14.5 points per game — the fifth-best points per game average in the Big East. Entering this season, Adomako and White are the No. 2 and No. 3 returning scorers in the conference.
Both players were named to the All-Big East Second Team at the conclusion of last season. White was also a unanimous selection for the conference’s all-Freshman team.
The sophomore was humble in looking back on the accomplishments of her freshman season.
“Coming in I didn’t really think about trying to make an impact. I just wanted to play,” White said.
Adomako, however, did not hesitate to praise the tremendous play of her teammate.
“I knew that she was going to do well. I said it at media day last year. I think she did really well. She was the best freshman, I think, in the league,” Adomako said of White’s performance last season.
Heading into this season, Adomako and White have been identified as players to watch in the Big East. They were both unanimous picks for the preseason all-Big East First Team, making Georgetown the only team in the conference to have two unanimous selections.
“It’s is a great accomplishment. We’re excited,” Adomako said, referring to their selections to the all-Big East team.
White saw the selection as important sign of progress for her and Adomako.
“I was happy about moving up from the second team to the first team,” White said.
The high bar set for Adomako and White by the Big East is exceeded only by the expectations that the two players have set for themselves. They are both acutely aware that they will be the focus of opponents’ pre-game preparation and will draw special attention from defenses. To continue their success, Adomako and White know that they will have to bring their play to a new level this season.
“Obviously everyone knows your game now and everyone has scouting reports on you so you just have to work hard,” Adomako said, also noting the need to be more consistent in her shooting.
White echoed the sentiments of her teammate.
“They expect more from me,” White said, referring to her coaches and the rest of the staff. “Other teams know my game so I have to work on it and just do more than I did last year. I’ve been focusing on my threes a lot. I didn’t shoot too well from the three last year.”
In addition to improving their games individually, Adomako and White are also focused on finding ways to complement each other’s strengths. Having played together for one season already, they hope their chemistry on the court adds another dimension to their game.
“A duo is definitely important to have on each team and it’s fun playing with Dionna,” Adomako said of the tandem of talent that she and White bring to the court.
“I really like playing with Dorothy. She is strong and she can get to the basket, so I know if I miss she can get the rebound,” White said.
Georgetown Head Coach Natasha Adair will rely heavily on Adomako and White this season and will look to them to improve upon their previous successes. She envisions them as dominant forces with the potential to control the game.
“We’re a very unselfish team. And I think that helps with chemistry and I think that helps with camaraderie, and you need that to be successful. But when you have stars on your team — and they aren’t the only two, those are the two that are recognized right now — they need to take over, in times where it’s time for them to,” Adair said of Adomako and White.
Adair emphasized that encouraging Adomako and White to be more assertive has been a focus at practice so far this season.
“We could be running things or executing things, and they may pass it, and I say, ‘Come here, you need to take that shot.’ And it’s hard for this group because they are so unselfish,” Adair said of her star duo. “But in order for us to get to good versus great, those key players need to step up. They [scored] 14 points a game last year, there’s no reason why that can’t go up.”
In addition to being statistical leaders, Adair expects Adomako and White to be vocal team leaders as well. Given that they will be integral components of the team’s on-the-court strategy, Adair sees their leadership presence as crucial to the team’s success.
“I challenge Dorothy and Dionna to make sure that you, as two unanimous all-Big East selections, raise the level every day and just lead by example every day,’” Adair said.
Adair’s message has certainly gotten through to her players.
“Coach emphasizes leadership every day at practice,” Adomako said.
With the Hoyas’ season set to tip off against crosstown rival George Washington on Nov. 11, Adomako and White are poised to make an early and lasting impact for Georgetown. If their play from last year is any indication of what is in store for this season, fans will not be disappointed when this duo takes the court.
(Cover photo: Michelle Xu/The Hoya)