The Tulsa Golden Hurricane men’s basketball team leave Tampa with a win over USF, 63-54. Tulsa’s win came despite shooting just 29% from the field.
The two teams played a close first half, with Tulsa maintaining a five point lead at halftime, 28-23. The Golden Hurricane got a lot of help from their bench, who scored 17 points in relief in the period. USF’s Stephan Jiggets led all first half scorers with eight points.
In the second half, they continued to play a close game, with neither team leading by more than five points for the first eight minutes. After that, Tulsa went on a 12-1 run to go up 52-38 with a little more than nine minutes left in the game. The Bulls clawed their way back to within a handful with 1:21 on the clock, but fouls and free throws favored Tulsa in the end.
Tulsa’s poor shooting percentage of 29% from the field was overcome by an impressive 23-27 (85.2%) from the free throw line. Not only did they shoot well, but they kept USF from shooting free throws. The Bulls only had 11 attempts in the entire game, and none in the first half. The free throw advantage in both attempts and made shots is the clear story of the game. USF had a four point advantage in the paint, but Tulsa was more effective with offensive rebounds, outscoring the Bulls, 19-12.
Also noteworthy in the win for Tulsa was the 31 points off their bench, nearly half of the team total. Nine different Golden Hurricane scored points, led by Junior Etou with 17 and DaQuan Jeffries with 16. No other Tulsa players scored in double digits.
For the Bulls, it was Jiggets who led the way, with a very solid 22 points. Freshman guard, David Collins, was the other bull in double digits, with 11 points. As a team, USF shot just 39% from the field, another contributing factor to their loss.
With the win, Tulsa improves to 13-10 (6-5). The Golden Hurricane will host the Tulane Green Wave on Thursday, February 8th.
The Bulls slip to 8-16 (1-10). They’ll spend Wednesday evening, February 7th, as guests to the UConn Huskies. USF’s losing streak is three games. They have one just one of their past 11 games. The UConn game can be viewed on ESPNU. Tipoff is 7 PM EST.