UCF Rebounds Past Memphis, 70-65
Jan. 27, 2013
MEMPHIS - - UCF out-rebounded Memphis (12-8, 3-3 C-USA), 46-34, and converted that into 15 second chance points in a 70-65 win in the Elma Roane Fieldhouse, Sunday. The win is the first of the C-USA slate for the Knights, who improve to 7-12 on the season and 1-4 in C-USA.
"We were concerned at halftime that we were not finishing plays," Head Coach Melissa McFerrinsaid. "By that, we wanted to keep their guards out of the lane and keep them off the free-throw line, and we weren't committed to doing that tonight. UCF runs a dribble-drive, so in that, once they get past your guards, the post is committed to helping, and that leaves a backside board wide open and that's where (Erika Jones) cleaned up today."
Jones got behind the Tigers for 18 points and 17 rebounds, while teammate Kayli Keough grabbed eight rebounds off the bench. In all, the Knights out-rebounded Memphis 46-34, and turned 18 offensive rebounds into 15 second chance points.
"When the ball went up, we didn't have a sense of urgency to box anyone out," McFerrin said. "Then we gave up three wide open threes, without anyone running out at the shooter, and threes are kind of like a shooting drill, once they start falling, they tend to keep falling."
The reverse could not be said for the Tigers' three-point efforts. Memphis, baffled by a UCF zone that changed between a 2-3 and 1-3-1, settled for jumpers outside the paint, and the team was 4-for-19, with three of the makes coming from Nicole Dickson. Memphis converted just 28 points in the paint and has just six points off offensive put backs.
"We were trying to outscore them rather than get stops," McFerrin said. "When we are not committed to defense, we are going to lose. In our three C-USA wins, we held them to 50 points, in our three losses, they've scored almost 70, it's that simple."
The Tigers actually led at the half, 37-27, after shooting 44.1 percent from the floor. But UCF, who struggled to convert and shot just 33.3 percent, came out and opened the second half on a tear, getting into the lane and picking apart the defense and using a 10-4 run to trim the lead to 41-37. Gevenia Carter then drilled back-to-back wide open threes from the left corner to cut the deficit to two at 42-40. A third Carter triple pulled UCF to just one down, and when Andrea Hines stuck back an offensive rebound, she put UCF up for good at 45-44 with 11:39 to play. Briahanna Jackson then hit a triple of her own from the top of the key to push UCF in front 48-44.
From there, UCF kept running at the rim, stretching their lead to nine at 56-47 with 6:42 to play. Nicole Dickson tried to answer for Memphis, hitting a jumper and a three-point field goal to cut it to 56-52, but UCF then used the free-throw line to keep the Tigers at bay and push their lead back to 64-56 with 2:25 to play. Dickson again drained a three and freshman Ariel Hearnwent coast to coast for a lay in off a rare late defensive rebound from Memphis to pull to 64-61 down with 1:35 to play. But then the noise of the Elma Roane Fieldhouse backfired on the Tigers, as McFerrin yelled for her team not to foul, her defender only heard the word foul, and fouled, sending Andrea Hines to the line. Hines hit the first and missed the second, but Memphis, beaten on the boards for most of the night, gave up an offensive rebound off a missed free-throw, and had to watch the game slip away, 70-65.
Dickson led Memphis with 20 points and 10 rebounds for a double-double, while Bilqis Abdul- Qaadir added 13 points. Hearn finished with 11 points in the loss.
Jones finished with 18 points and 17 rebounds for UCF, while Gevenia Carter finished with 17 points, including two three-point field goals. Freshman Briahanna Jackson finished with 14 points and four assists.
Memphis will remain at home and will host Rice, Thursday, at 7 p.m. in the Elma Roane Fieldhouse.