UALR overcame a one-point halftime deficit and went on for a 66-59 victory over the Tulsa Golden Hurricane in front of 906 fans at the Donald W. Reynolds Center Sunday afternoon. UALR (7-2) added to its wins over No. 24 LSU and Oklahoma with its seventh win today, while Tulsa fell to 5-6 overall.
The Trojans dominated the offensive scoring in the paint, out-scoring the Hurricane 48-20 for the game inside the lane, and shooting 53.7-percent overall from the field. Tulsa shot just 37-percent from the field. Kelsee Grovey led the Tulsa attack with 12 points, while Ashley Clark was next with all of her 10 points coming in the second half.
UALR's Kiera Clark and Taylor Gault tied for the game-high with 16 points, while Shanity James added 13 points.
“I think we really suffered at the three-point line today. We had four made threes at half and came out in the second half and only make two,” said Tulsa coach Matilda Mossman. “Obviously, we have to shoot the ball better, which is what this team relies on. If we aren't shooting well then we don't do other things very well and we certainly didn't guard well today.”
Tulsa opened a four-point lead in the second half when Mariah Turner scored on a layup and free throw to put the Hurricane ahead 33-29 at the 19:36 mark. UALR tied the score at 33 at the 18:25 mark, for the sixth tie of the game, and wouldn't trail again after Gault's layup with 18:03 remaining in the game made the score 35-33.
Teanna Reid's three-pointer at the 14:01 mark cut the UALR lead to four points at 42-38. The Hurricane would score only two more points in the next five minutes, while the Trojans built a 50-40 lead with 9:01 remaining in the contest. UALR had its biggest lead of 13 points when James' layup at the 2:58 mark made the score 62-49. The Hurricane whittled the Trojan lead down to five points, 62-57, with 0:25 left on the clock. UALR made 4-of-4 free throws in the final 0:22 to hold on for the victory.
Tulsa maintained a one-point lead at halftime despite getting out-scored 20-6 in the paint during the first 20 minutes, however, the Hurricane knocked down three more treys than UALR and connected on 6-of-9 free throws, while the Trojans just managed to knock down 2 of 9 shots from the line.
James' layup snapped an 8-8 tie at the 14:11 mark to begin a 7-0 run for UALR, leading to a 15-8 lead for the Trojans with 10:39 remaining in the first half. Tulsa then went on an 8-2 run to cut UALR's lead to one point at 17-16 on a Grovey layup at the 6:33 mark.
Reid's three-pointer at the 5:18 mark gave Tulsa a 21-19 lead, as Jordyn Holmes 10-footer increased the Hurricane lead to four points with 4:51 left on the first-half clock. UALR scored the next two baskets to tie the score at 23.
Holmes knocked down a three-pointer from the right corner to put Tulsa ahead 30-27 with 0:51 left in the first 20 minutes. Gault's jumper brought UALR to within one point at 30-29 just before the first-half buzzer.
Grovey led the Hurricane in the first half with eight points, while Clark and Gault each had 10 first-half points for UALR.
Tulsa returns to action on December 31, as the Hurricane opens American Athletic Conference play against the Cincinnati Bearcats in a 2 p.m. game at the Reynolds Center.