Despite Shanice Johnson’s return to the lineup, the Bearcats could not hold off Tulane’s offensive assault on Saturday. Tulane overcame a five point deficit with 29 seconds remaining in regulation and outlasted Cincinnati in overtime for a 74-68 win. The Green Wave were led by junior guard Kolby Morgan, who posted career highs in points (35) and rebounds (12), further cementing her reputation as one of the best all-around players in the American Athletic Conference.
UC lost its second straight game, dropping to 14-7 overall and 5-3 in conference play. The loss calls into question the ability of the upstart Bearcats to compete consistently against the upper echelon of AAC teams this season. With the win, Tulane matched Cincinnati’s overall 14-7 record and 5-3 mark in league play.
The Bearcats took a six point lead into the locker room, but squandered it in the third quarter, allowing the Green Wave to tie the game at 48 as they entered the fourth. Cincinnati once again took the lead in the fourth quarter, holding a five point advantage with 29 seconds remaining after Johnson completed a three point play. A late three pointer by Morgan, which she followed up with a steal from Ana Owens, put the Green Wave in position to tie the game with 11 seconds left. A layup by Tulane’s Shakira Harding did just that, sending the game to overtime, which the Green Wave dominated from start to finish.
Cincinnati performed steadily on offensive against Tulane, shooting a little better than 40 percent from the field. The obvious weakness on the offensive end was itsoutside shooting. The Bearcats hit on just 4 of their 20 three-point shots. Typically sharpshooting Ana Owens and Bianca Quisenberry combined for a 2-of-12 showing from behind the arc against the feisty defense of Tulane defensive aces Morgan and Leslie Vorpahl, who kicked in 11 points, five assists, and two steals for the Green Wave.
The Bearcats out-rebounded the Green Wave 45-40, thanks to strong efforts by Johnson (14), Chelsea Warren (8), Owens (6) and Quisenberry (6). Unfortunately, UC surrendered 21 turnovers to Tulane’s 16 on the evening. Owens committed a season-high of six turnovers for the Bearcats.
Johnson led the way for UC, completing her 10th double-double of the season. She scored 18 points while collecting a game-high 14 rebounds. Johnson also posted a team-high of four assists. Owens (15) and Quisenberry (11) also ended up in double figures while Warren posted a supremely efficient eight points on 4-of-4 shooting.
UC returns to action on Wednesday night on the road against the University of South Florida in search of a desperately needed win to keep pace in the AAC.