Tulane cruises to 68-49 victory at Cincinnati

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CINCINNATI – The Tulane women’s basketball team won its third straight conference game by double-digits at Cincinnati, 68-49.

Tulane (7-3, 3-2) shot 45.8 percent from the field (22-48) while holding Cincinnati to 32.7 percent (17-52). The Green Wave forced 24 Cincinnati turnovers and scored 28 points off the change of possession. Tulane also logged 28 rebounds and 28 points in the paint.

“We played sloppy today,” Tulane head coach Lisa Stockton said. “We stayed with it. In the second half, they really tried to slow the game down a lot. We just got a little more patient on offense. We just had too many turnovers in the first half that kept us from really going on a run. Defensively, I am really proud of what we did.”

Senior Krystal Freeman led the way for the Green Wave with a game-high 18 points and six rebounds. Senior Arsula Clark and junior Dynah Jones joined Freeman as the only Tulane players in double-figures with 12 and 13 points, respectively. Sophomore Salma Bates added eight points, five rebounds and a team-high five assists.

The Green Wave and the Bearcats went back-and-forth to open the third quarter. Cincinnati led 32-29 with 7:42 left to play in the third then the Green Wave clamped down on defense and went on an 18-6 run to take a 47-38 lead. The Olive and Blue forced four turnovers, three coming from shot clock violations, during the run. The Bearcats had an and-one to close the quarter to make the Tulane lead 47-41 going into the final 10 minutes.

After trading buckets to open the fourth, Tulane went on a 10-0 run to take a 63-45 lead. The Olive and Blue were able to close it out and take the 68-49 win. Junior Mia Heide grabbed a team-high seven rebounds and added six points, three steals and one block for the Olive and Blue.

Both sides started slowly to open the game with Cincinnati jumping out to an early 11-6 lead. The Green Wave were able to tie the game at 13 after the first quarter behind five straight Clark points and a jumper from sophomore Irina Parau.

After the Bearcats hit a layup, the Green Wave went on a 9-0 run to take a 22-15 lead in the second quarter. Cincinnati came back to tie the game at 26 with 46 seconds left in the half, but Freeman hit a layup late to give the Olive and Blue a two-point edge going into the break. The Green Wave shot 40.0 (10-25) percent from the field in the first half and logged eight assists on their 10 made baskets. Tulane also forced Cincinnati to commit 13 turnovers in the opening 20 minutes.

Tulane held Cincinnati’s leading scorer, I’Imari Thomas, to nine points on 3-16 shooting. Thomas came into the game ranked fourth in the nation and leading the conference in scoring at 27.1 points per game. This was the first game in the 2020-21 season Thomas did not score at least 23 points. Freshman Jillian Hayes led the Bearcats with 16 points and eight rebounds.

The Green Wave will return to Avron B. Fogelman Arena in the Devlin Fieldhouse on Wednesday, Jan. 13, as they take on South Florida. Tip-off is set for 6 p.m. in New Orleans.

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