Lady Pirates Fall To Tulsa At C-USA Tournament 77-60
March 3, 2006
DALLAS, Texas - Point guard Kara Pongonis-Paslay tied a championship record with 10 assists and Tulsa's four other starters all reached double figures as the top-seeded Golden Hurricane defeated No. 8 East Carolina (17-12), 77-60, in the first quarterfinal of the 2006 Conference USA Women's Basketball Championship presented by Aeropostale at Moody Coliseum on Friday. Tulsa (23-5) forward Emily Jaskowiak registered a double-double with game-highs of 20 points and 11 rebounds.
Pongonis-Paslay turned the ball over just once and did not attempt a shot as the rest of the squad converted 58.6 (27-of-46) percent of its shots in the victory that puts Tulsa in Saturday's first semifinal to play the winner of the No. 4 Southern Miss-No. 5 Marshall match-up at 3 p.m. CT. Conference USA Player of the Year Jillian Robbins added 16 points, Tandem Mays chipped in with 15 and Megan Moody had 14 to round out the double-digit scorers for Tulsa.
"We knew what ECU would bring today," Tulsa head coach Charlene Thomas-Swinson said. "I was really glad that my team could keep their composure. Just like today, there were many examples of a player that took it upon themselves to step up. I think it was important to get this win out of the way, so that we can rest our bodies for tomorrow."
After a jumper by Cherie Mills pulled East Carolina (17-12) within three at 38-35 early in the second half, the Golden Hurricane scored nine unanswered points to build a 47-35 at the 15:56 mark. Tulsa's lead never got below eight points the rest of the way as they went on to post the 17-point victory. The Golden Hurricane made 13-of-18 field goals after the break to help outscore the Pirates, 41-30.
Tulsa built a 36-30 halftime lead after converting 14-of-28 field goal attempts, while the defense limited East Carolina to just 9-of-26 field goals in the opening 20 minutes. The Pirates did make 9-of-10 free throws to keep their deficit in single digits the entire half.