Defensive shines for Tulane in 68-54 win over USF

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RJ McGee
(Photo: Parker Waters)

NEW ORLEANS – The Tulane University men’s basketball team continued its strong play in conference action, as it picked up a 68-54 win over the University of South Florida Saturday afternoon inside the Avron B. Fogelman Arena in the Devlin Fieldhouse.

With the win, Tulane improved to 3-1 in American Athletic Conference action and 6-7 overall. The Green Wave’s 3-1 mark to open league play is the team’s best start since the 2014-15 campaign.

The victory over USF moved the Green Wave to 2-0 at home in league play for the first time ever.

The Green Wave never trailed in the game and led for over 37 minutes in the contest. Tulane once again featured a balanced offensive attack, as three players scored in double figures.

Sophomores R.J. McGee, Kevin Cross and freshman Jalen Cook all finished with 17 points apiece. McGee’s 17 points were a career high, as he made his second start of the season. McGee and Cross also finished with eight rebounds apiece.

As a team, Tulane shot 36 percent from the field and 32 percent from 3-point range, connecting on eight 3-pointers.

The Green Wave opened up a 31-22 halftime lead.

Tulane then came out of the locker room for the second half on a 14-2 run to open up a 20-point lead (45-25) with just under 14 minutes remaining in the game, crushing any chance of a USF comeback.

Tulane would go on to push its advantage to 23 points later in the second half, as it went on to secure the win.

-The Green Wave’s meeting with USF marked the 40th all-time meeting with the Bulls. Tulane holds the all-time series lead 23-17.
-Head coach Ron Hunter improved to 2-1 all-time against USF.
-Tulane’s matchup against USF marked just the fifth Green Wave eighth opponent with a record under .500.
-The Green Wave had three-or-more players score in double figures for the 11th time this year.
-Tulane won the turnover battle for the 10th time this season. The Green Wave finished with 10 turnovers compared to USF’s 17. The Green Wave scored 24 points off of USF turnovers.
-Tulane guard Jaylen Forbes made his 35th straight start.
-The Green Wave made a 3-pointer for the 239th straight game.

Tulane returns to action on Wednesday (Jan. 12) where it will head to Wichita State. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. CT and will be aired live on ESPN+.

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