TCU Hands North Dakota State First Loss, 74-43
Feb. 22, 2005
FORT WORTH, Texas -- The TCU Lady Frogs (20-8, 10-3 C-USA) ran their streak of 20-win seasons to five Tuesday by knocking off the North Dakota State Bison (24-1) by a 74-43 score in Daniel-Meyer Coliseum. TCU had not hosted an undefeated team this late in the season since the Texas Longhorns came to Fort Worth, Texas, exactly 19 years ago with a 25-0 record. NDSU is in its first season as an NCAA Division I women's basketball program.
TCU never trailed in the contest, going up 5-0 with just 1:05 gone off the clock. The Lady Frogs' lead hit double figures for the first time at the 10:57 mark when Niki Newton got an easy layup in transition off a feed from Moneka Knight to make the score 14-4. After North Dakota State's Katie Lorenz hit a jumper to pull her squad within 13, 23-10, with 7:23 remaining, the Lady Frogs went on an 11-0 run. TCU headed to the locker room with a 42-17 advantage at the half.
The Bison shot just 24 percent (6-of-25) in the first period and committed 14 turnovers. TCU connected on 17-of-38 (.447) and had six miscues. The Lady Frogs' also out-rebounded North Dakota State 26-18.
NDSU made a little push in the opening three minutes of the second half, cutting the TCU lead down to 18, 44-26, after Leah Klabo canned a jumper. The Lady Frogs answered back and eventually pushed the deficit to 30, 63-33, on a Vanessa Clementino free throw with 8:24 to go in the game. TCU's largest lead came with 3:56 showing on the scoreboard when Natasha Lacy drove to the basket for a layup to set the score at 68-35.
TCU's Sandora Irvin was the leading scorer with 18 points to go along with a game-high 11 rebounds and three blocked shots. Lacy ended with 14 points, nine boards, seven assists and three steals. Clementino reached double figures in scoring as well with a dozen off the bench. Newton was the Lady Frogs' other double digit scorer with 11 in just 16 minutes of action. Knight turned in a solid outing off the bench with five points and career-highs in rebounds (5) and assists (6).
Katie Dahlen, Danni Heintzelman, Klabo and Lorenz all scored eight points to lead North Dakota State. Lacey Johnson came away with a team-best nine rebounds, while Lorenz added seven boards.
TCU made 42.6 percent (29-of-68) of its shots and finished 14-of-23 (.609) at the free-throw line. NDSU went 16-for-60 (.267) from the field and was 9-of-15 (.600) at the line. TCU had a 51-41 edge on the glass and won the turnover battle 14-22. The Lady Frogs were dominant inside, outscoring the Bison 48-18, and they led 18-6 in fast break points.
The Lady Frogs' final home and regular season game takes place Sunday, Feb. 27, at noon CST versus Conference USA rival Houston (19-7, 9-4 C-USA). TCU upended the Lady Cougars earlier in the season in Houston by a 63-55 score. The game will be televised by the C-USA Television Network and can be seen locally on KFWD Channel 52. The contest also marks the final home game for seniors Irvin and Newton.