Tulane suffers tough 73-60 loss to USF in Devlin

Alec Eskind, Staff Reporter

Tulane (8-14, 1-8 American Athletic Conference) did shoot a lot of rainbow-like 3-pointers in its 73-60 loss to the USF Bulls (5-17, 2-7 AAC) on Wednesday night, 30 to be exact, but the Green Wave shooting display from deep was far from a pretty sight, making just 23.3 percent for the game. While on one end the Wave’s 1-3-1 zone was getting picked apart by USF guard Jahmal McMurray (23 points) and big man Jaleel Cousins (17 points, nine rebounds, five blocks), their 3-point barrage on the other end, albeit shorthanded without leading scorer and senior guard Louis Dabney, left much to be desired.

“We didn’t get the results on the offensive end that warranted how well we played tonight,” head coach Ed Conroy said. “I don’t think it’s inconceivable that [freshman point guard] Von Julien would’ve had 11 or 12 assists if we’d have knocked down a few more 3’s.”

Julien finished with just five assists, which tells the story of the woeful offensive night in and of itself.     

With NBA All-Star big brother DeMarcus Cousins on hand, USF’s Jaleel had himself a career night, especially in the block department, as Tulane’s 3-point woes forced the Green Wave to drive the ball right at the 6’11 senior.

“I thought [Cousins] had it going early, he had it going consistently, and I thought he did it on both offense and defense,” Conroy said. “He was a handful tonight.”

Sophomore forward Dylan Osetkowski (16 points, 5 rebounds) and redshirt junior Malik Morgan (15 points, 30 percent field goals, 23 percent from 3, 3 steals) led the way for the reeling Green Wave, but both players looked overmatched by both the USF combo of Murray and Cousins and by the role of filling in for the injured Dabney.

“Unfortunately, [the 3-point attempts] didn’t go the way I wanted them to,” Morgan said. “It does kind of hurt a little bit not having Lou on the other side to free up the lane driving. He’s a good shooter and a terrific driver.”

The Green Wave has now lost eight of its last nine games and three in a row in the not-so-friendly confines of Devlin Fieldhouse.

“Don’t sugarcoat it, as I told the guys, it’s a tough stretch,” Conroy said. “This is not the challenge we chose but it’s the challenge we’re going to rise to. As tough as these times are, I think the guys in that locker room are tougher than the times that we’re facing. And we’re going to meet that challenge.”           

Tulane heads to Tulsa next to take on the Golden Hurricane (13-7, 5-3 AAC) at 5 p.m. on Saturday.