Bearcats Bounced From BIG EAST Championship|
March 7, 2009
HARTFORD, Conn. - Four Bearcats scored in double figures, but the University of Cincinnati women's basketball team dropped a 68-58 decision against USF in the second round of the BIG EAST Championship on Saturday afternoon (March 7) at the XL Center.
Jill Stephens (Mineral Wells, W.Va./Parkersburg South) led the Bearcats (14-17) with 15 points in her final game at UC. Michelle Jones (Cincinnati, Ohio/Mount Notre Dame) totaled 14 points, while Kahla Roudebush (Noblesville, Ind./Hamilton Southeastern) and Shanasa Sanders (Jacksonville, Fla./Ribault Senior) scored 13 and 11, respectively.
USF (22-9) hit a conference tournament record 14 three-pointers, and shot 56 percent from three and hit 6-of-6 from the free-throw line down the stretch to put the game away.
The Bulls jumped out to an 11-0 lead in the first three-plus minutes, but UC chipped away and pulled even at 15-15 on a Roudebush layup with 9:12 to go in the first half.
UC took its only lead, 27-26, with 2:07 to go on a Stephens jumper.
UC trailed by just one at the half, 32-31, despite 6-of-11 shooting from behind the three-point line by USF.
The hot shooting continued for the Bulls in the second half as Jazmine Sepulveda, Jasmine Wynne and Shantia Grace hit threes in the first six minutes to push the USF lead to 10, 45-35.
Again the undermanned Bearcats battled back, pulling to within 48-44 on a Sanders layup at the 9:10 mark.
Four threes from Sepulveda, who tied a BIG EAST Championship record with eight, pushed the USF lead to 11, 60-49, with 5:19 to go.
Cincinnati again fought back to within six, 62-56, with 1:38 to go. The Bulls converted six straight times at the free throw line to put the game out of reach.
Sepulveda led the Bulls with 24 points, while Grace was the only other USF player in double figures with 13 points. Jessica Lawson grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds.
Angel Morgan (Springfield, Ohio/Springfield North) grabbed seven rebounds, the 20th time this season that she has corralled seven or more boards.
The Bulls advance to play the No. 1 seed, Connecticut, on Sunday at 2 p.m.