Lady Frogs Lose Heartbreaker to Southern California, 71-70
Dec. 21, 2004
FORT WORTH, Texas
The TCU Lady Frogs led for all but 3.6 seconds in their Tuesday match-up with the Southern California Women of Troy in Fort Worth. Unfortunately, those 3.6 seconds were the final ticks in the second half. Jamie Hagiya hit a short jumper from the right side of the basket to lift USC (6-3) to a 71-70 victory over TCU (7-5), which has lost its last three.
The Lady Frogs came out firing on all cylinders, outscoring the Women of Troy 17-3 in the first 5:52 of the game. Eight of those points came from senior Sandora Irvin, who would finish the half with 10 points and five rebounds. USC answered with a 17-6 run to set the score at 23-20 with 6:36 remaining.
TCU responded with six unanswered points in a hurry thanks to a pair of threes by freshmen Amanda Holmes and JimAnne Baker. The Purple and White was able to extend the lead back to double digits when rookie Lorie Butler-Rayford got a layup to put TCU ahead 33-23 at the 2:29 mark. USC's Kim Gipson hit a free throw and a layup in the final minutes to cut the disparity to 33-26 at the half.
Southern California was able to tie the game up at 37 with 3:19 gone in the second period when Hagiya got an easy lay-in. A 5-0 spurt by the Lady Frogs put them back on top and the game seemed to be in their control. TCU held a 68-61 advantage with 5:06 left in the contest after a tough jumper by freshman Moneka Knight banked in on the right side as she was driving to the basket.
Turnovers were critical in the final five minutes. USC's Meghan Knekow was able to hit a three with 3:40 showing on the clock to cap a 7-0 run by the Women of Troy that tied the game up at 68 apiece. Irvin got a layup on the next possession after her squad called a 30-second timeout.
Southern California's Chloe Kerr had several opportunities to put her team ahead, going 1-for-6 at the free-throw line in the final 2:56 of the contest. TCU had four turnovers during that span, the final one of which allowed Hagiya to nail the game-winner. The Lady Frogs launched a pass on the inbounds after Hagiya's shot that traveled three quarters of the court to Irvin. She was able to break free toward the basket, but her left-handed layup came up a little short and rolled off the rim as time expired.
Irvin still dominated the game with 26 points on 10-of-17 shooting, and she added 17 rebounds, four assists, three blocks and four steals. Sophomore Ashley Davis was the only other Lady Frog in double figures with a dozen. Butler-Rayford came off the bench to tally eight points and seven boards.
Gnekow led the Women of Troy with 16 points, a team-high 13 rebounds and four steals. Brynn Cameron chipped in 15 points, three assists and three steals. Rachel Woodward recorded 11 points and Hagiya finished with eight and a game-high five steals.
TCU shot 42.4 percent for the game (25-59) compared to a 40.0 percent showing by USC (26-65). The Lady Frogs held a dominant advantage on the glass with a 48-34 edge. Second chance points, however, favored the Women of Troy, 14-13. Points off turnovers were the difference in the game, as USC converted 31 TCU miscues into 34 points. The Lady Frogs forced the Women of Troy into 23 mistakes, but only 15 points resulted from them.
The Lady Frogs will take a week off for the holidays and return to action Dec. 29 when Grambling State comes to Fort Worth. Game time is set for 7 p.m. CST in Daniel-Meyer Coliseum.
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