Women's Basketball Moves to 3-1 With 77-64 Victory
Nov. 18, 2013
MEMPHIS - -
The University of Memphis women's basketball team (3-1) shot 52.7 percent from the field in a 77-64 win over Jackson State (0-4). Ariel Hearn led Memphis with a career-best 26 point night, while Pa'Sonna Hope and Mooriah Rowser each added 11 points in a game that was marred by a combined 56 turnovers.
Memphis struggled in the early minutes of the game with Jackson State's trapping defense. The home Tigers found themselves in a hole early, as Jackson State took a 22-14 lead with 10:44 to play in the opening half, forcing Melissa McFerrin to call a timeout. The Tigers adjusted to the JSU pressure with a 5-0 run to pull to 22-19 down with 7:37 to play thanks to four points from Hearn and a free throw from Jasbriell Swain. JSU responded with a layup from Ayanna Hardy-Fuller, who would finish with eight points before fouling out, but Hearn answered with four more points, drilling a triple with 6:50 left in the first half to pull Memphis to just one down at 25-24.
But it was sophomore Courtney Powell who helped Memphis take the lead for good. Freshman guard Breigha Wilder-Cochran stole a ball and fed it to Powell, who scored it to push Memphis ahead 28-27 with 4:40 to play in the opening stanza. From there, it was the Tigers' bench that pushed the Memphis lead to 38-31, as Powell scored four points in the last minutes of the first half while Wilder-Cochran scored three points and Taylor Williams scored a free-throw. Memphis hit the locker room up 38-33 as a Tiger tipped the ball into the JSU goal as the first half horn expired.
In the second half, Memphis took advantage of fast break points, outscoring JSU 10-4 off fast break points and 20-12 on points in the paint in the second half. The home team shot 54.2 percent in the second half, pushing the lead out to as much as 17 before late fouls and turnovers allowed JSU to close the gap to 77-64. Hearn scored 14 of her 26 points in the second 20-minute period, shooting 6-for-8 from the floor.
Memphis struggled from the free-throw line, shooting 17-for-37 (45.9 percent) for the game. Hearn and Wilder-Cochran each had seven assists and three steals in the win. Taylor Williams and Courtney Powell each led Memphis with career-best marks of nine rebounds in the win.
The Tigers go back out on the road, Friday, to play Sun Belt preseason favorite, UALR, at 7 p.m. in Little Rock. That game can be heard in Memphis on 91.7 FM.