Women's basketball makes a late run to rise above Memphis
Published: Sunday, February 17, 2013
Updated: Sunday, February 17, 2013 19:02
Despite turning the ball over 18 times and being out-shot, the Lady Mustangs (19-5, 10-1 C-USA) squeaked away with a win, beating the Memphis Tigers (14-11, 5-6 C-USA) 74-67.
After losing for the first time in conference play on Thursday, the Mustangs needed a late second-half push to make sure this victory did not slip through the cracks.
SMU’s push was led by Alisha Filmore’s 21 points and Akil Simpson’s season-high 17 rebounds. Filmore was 7-13 from the field and 3-5 from three-point range.
Simpson, who led the team in rebounding, also added 13 points.
Keena Mays, the reigning Conference-USA player of the week, was only 4-11 from the field, but her seven made free throws helped her finish with 17 points, good enough for second on the team.
SMU’s big-three didn’t do much in the first half, but the team’s strong play in the second half helped the Mustangs get back to their winning ways.
In the first half, the Mustangs continued to struggle shooting, hitting only 11-30 shots (36.7 percent).
SMU fell behind early, going down by as many as nine points to the Tigers in the first half. However, the Mustangs battled back with help from Simpson (9 rebounds, 4 points).
The Mustangs luckily out-rebounded the Tigers substantially, 24-12, which helped offset their poor shooting performance.
SMU took back the lead for the first time since the opening minutes when Mallory Singleton hit two free throws to put the Mustangs up 30-29.
In the second half the Mustangs played much better basketball, cutting down significantly on their unforced errors.
SMU only turned the ball over six times after turning the ball over 12 times in the first half.
In the second half the Tigers only had nine points off of the Mustangs’ mistakes, which was an improvement for SMU after giving up 16 points off of mistakes in the first half.
Despite SMU’s improved play, the Tigers were able to keep the Mustangs on edge, scoring 24 points in the paint in the second half alone.
The Tigers and Mustangs battled back-and-forth, trading shot-for-shot most of the second half.
But with just over five minutes remaining in the game, Lexus Williams hit two free throws to give the Mustangs a 62-60 lead and they never looked back after that.
SMU shot the ball considerably better, going 13-27 from the field. Filmore had 16 of her 21 points in the second half, providing SMU with an offensive punch they lacked in the first 20 minutes.
In the end, it was the Mustangs’ offense that helped propel them to the victory.
SMU will look to continue their winning ways when they return to Moody Coliseum on Thursday to take on Tulsa at 7 p.m.