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Official Release: No. 20/19 Bulls Shut Down Drexel


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USF ATHLETICS GoUSFBulls.com

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DATE: NOV 15, 2015

 

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No. 20/19 Bulls Shut Down Drexel

 

TAMPA, NOV. 15, 2015  The No.20/19 USF women’s basketball team (2-0) battled Drexel University for the first time in program history, and shut down the Dragons in the fourth quarter for a 73-58 victory Sunday evening. The Bulls held Drexel to just eight points in the final quarter, and outscored them 34-23 in the second half to secure their second win of the season.

 

USF opens the 2015-16 campaign 2-0 for just the fourth time since the 2008-2009 season.  USF began the 2008-09, 20012-13 and 2014-15 seasons 2-0. Sunday’s game was the first time since 2008-09 both wins occurred on the Bulls home court.

 

Senior Courtney Williams (Folkston, Ga.) led the Green and Gold with 26 points, her third consecutive 25+ point performance, dating back to last season. Classmate Alisia Jenkins (Statesboro, Ga.) notched her first double-double performance of the year with 16 points and 21 rebounds. Her rebounding effort neared all-time great Wanda Guyton, who holds the single-game rebounds record (25) and the single-game defensive rebounds record (16). Jenkins matched her career high 21 rebounds, but this time it came in 40 minutes of regulation.

 

Laura Ferreira (Lisboa, Portugal) joined Williams and Jenkins in double figures, scoring 11 points and grabbed nine rebounds. Freshman Kitija Laksa (Riga, Latvia) scored seven points in her second career start, while Maria Jespersen (Arhus, Denmark) and Shalethia Stringfield (Jacksonville, Fla.) added six and four points respectively.

 

The Bulls never trailed, and despite the close score throughout the first 30 minutes of action, USF controlled the pace of the game and never let Drexel come within more than three points after the final tie at 20-20 in the second quarter. The Dragons three-point shooting kept them in the contest during the third quarter, before USF went on a 10-0 run to take a 57-51 lead.

 

 

USF’s fourth quarter defense shut down the Drexel shooters and limited the Dragons to just eight points. Drexel went 0-10 in their final possessions, and the Bulls held Drexel scoreless for the last 6:59 of the game.

 

USF advances to the semifinals of the preseason Women’s National Invitation Tournament and will face the winner of the No. 5 Baylor and Southern Miss Thursday, Nov. 19. Baylor and Southern Miss are set for a 7 p.m. CT tip Monday.

Jose Fernandez’s 2015 women’s basketball team returns all five starters, including All-American Candidate Courtney Williams, from a team that posted a 27-8 (15-3 American) record in 2014-15 and finished the season in the top 25 rankings. The squad finished second behind eventual NCAA champion UConn in the American Athletic Conference and made an exciting NCAA Tournament run that saw USF top LSU in front of 5,560 fans in the Sun Dome in the NCAA regional round.

In 2015-16, the Bulls will be hosting their toughest schedule yet, including the opening rounds of the Preseason WNIT, along with perennial powers Penn State, Chattanooga, Oklahoma State and UConn making trips to Tampa. Season tickets, starting at just $65, are available for purchase online at USFBullsTix.com, by phone at 1-800-GoBulls or in person at the Gate B ticket office of the Sun Dome, with single game tickets going on sale in late September.

USF has made 11 postseason tournament appearances and had three NCAA Tournament berths in Head Coach Jose Fernandez’s 15 seasons. The all-time winningest coach in program history, Fernandez has guided USF to six 20-win seasons, two WNIT final four appearances, the 2009 WNIT championship and won more than 260 games.

– #GoBulls –

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