Fouls plague Wave in first loss of season


Jordan Figueredo, Print Sports Editor

The No. 6 Florida State Seminoles (1-1) dealt Tulane women’s basketball (2-1) its first loss of the season, finishing the Wave 78-72 in its home opener at the Donald L. Tucker Center in Tallahassee, Florida, remaining undefeated on this front since 2000.

The last time these two teams faced off on Dec. 22, 2014, the Seminoles defeated the Wave 65-54 and then went on to reach the Elite Eight of the NCAA March Madness tournament.

Despite the close loss this season, sophomore guard Kolby Morgan had a career game high with 26 points on 10-of-22 shooting from the field and the second straight game where she made four 3-pointers.

Tulane put up a fight with eight ties and seven lead changes in the first half. The Wave had its largest deficit down 20-25 toward the end of the first half. It was during this time that the freshmen stepped up for an offensive swell.

 “I thought our freshmen did a great job coming in and giving us great minutes,” head coach Lisa Stockton said.

With 0.2 seconds left in the half and the score tied at 36, it was expected halftime would begin with a tie but Tulane picked up a shooting foul on 3 attempt. Florida State freshman forward Maria Conde claimed all 3 points, ending the half with a 39-36 lead for Florida State.

Tulane stayed in the fight throughout the first half, but the Seminoles thrived. Florida State took 22 free throw attempts while the Wave only had six. This trend continued in the second half, keeping Tulane from putting up more points.

The Wave racked up a total 32 fouls with junior guard Leslie Vorpahl and senior forward Tierra Jones fouling out midway through fourth quarter.

“I thought our effort was good but the frustrating thing was the foul trouble,” Stockton said. “We just couldn’t keep our experienced players on the floor … in this kind of environment you need those people that have been there.”

Tulane had a season high 21 fouls last season. With those 32 fouls in just game three of this season, the amount of calls, perhaps stemming from the NCAA rule changes over the summer, perhaps just the youth of the team, are having a frustrating impact on the team.

Florida State took advantage of the Wave’s foul trouble, finishing 27-of-43 from the free throw line and outrebounding Tulane 51-32, pushing the Seminoles to a 74-62 lead with just over two minutes remaining.

However, the Wave didn’t quit until it was over, and Morgan tallied eight of the next ten points. The run proved not enough, and Tulane suffered a tough loss, unable to snap the Seminoles 18 home game win streak. Vorpahl alongside Morgan scored double digits and 3-for-5 from beyond the arc.

“They really fought, especially in those last two and a half minutes,” Stockton said. “We’re a young team and we’re learning. It would be nice to keep those older kids on the floor during crunch time.”

Tulane has the chance to come back from this loss against state rival LSU (2-1) in a non-conference matchup 7 p.m. Monday at home.

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