Tulane falls to ranked USF Bulls 77-65

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Sam Shafia, Associate Sports Editor

For the second half, it seemed that Tulane women’s basketball (16-8, 7-5 American Athletic Conference) had an extra gust of wind against No. 39 University of Southern Florida (16-6, 10-3 AAC), Tuesday at the Sun Dome. Tulane started coming back from its 30-40 first half by outscoring the Bulls in the fourth quarter. The Wave’s efforts, however, could not push them past the losing threshold as the game ended 77-65.

With the Wave’s competitive conference, this match-up against USF could not have been a walk in the park after losing to the Bulls 71-67 at home earlier in the season.

The first half of play proved to be difficult on the Wave defensively as the team attempted to keep up with the Bulls.

“The first half we just could not stop them,” head coach Lisa Stockton said.

In the second half, the Wave put up a better front and started to put the pieces together. At the end of the third quarter it seemed like the Wave might make a comeback as the team knocked down five unanswered points to head into the final period.

Tulane continued the attempt to close the gap throughout the fourth quarter and outscored USF 22-20. But the fouls got the best of the Wave as USF received the double bonus with minutes to go in the fourth quarter affording USF the perfect opportunity to score plenty of free points.

Sophomore guard Kolby Morgan had an impressive showing with a career-high scoring game. She swished the ball into the net for 30 points while hitting the only five three-point shots for Tulane. Out of the four foul shots Tulane received, she shot and sank three.

“It was a very impressive performance by Kolby Morgan,” Stockton said. “[Morgan’s] ability to score from the three and take it to the rim was really impressive.”

The team maintained a high level of effort throughout the second half. The Wave, overall, struggled with shooting, particularly from beyond the arc. USF out-rebounded Tulane 42-30 but the Wave had just 9 turnovers to USF’s 14, and recorded 10 steals while the Bulls only managed four.

Tulane returns home this week to face off against the SMU Mustangs at 2 p.m. on Sunday in Devlin Fieldhouse.