Lady Raiders advance in WNIT with win over Tulane
Jordan Barncastle led Texas Tech with a season-high 21 points.
March 18, 2012
LUBBOCK, Texas -- Texas Tech found itself in a familiar position during halftime of Sunday's Women's National Invitation Tournament second round game against Tulane.
The Lady Raiders led by seven but were even on the boards at 18 apiece, similar to Thursday night's halftime stats against Eastern Illinois.
But Tech showed its poise, out-rebounded the Green Wave 26-14 in the second half and closed out the game with a 13-5 run to beat Tulane, 69-55, advancing to the WNIT round of 16 for the second time in school history.
Tech (21-13) is now 3-0 against Tulane in the postseason.
"I thought at times in both games we had a chance to go one way or the other and I thought the kids really stuck together and communicated well," Tech head coach Kristy Curry said. "The poise that we are showing at times is really an improvement. We have been really pleased with us making a stop, making a play, making a good decision on both ends of the floor."
Tulane (23-11) led only for a moment in the opening minutes of the game but would pull within two possessions multiple times in the game but never took back the lead or tied the game.
Tech's biggest challenge was finding an answer for Tulane freshman forward Adesuwa Ebomwonyi. She scored a career-high 19 points and was persistent on the offensive glass in the first half, scoring 12 points with five rebounds and three offensive boards. She had only two rebounds and none of the offensive end in the second half.
"The difference in the game was the boards in the second half," Curry said. "At halftime it was 18-18 and 15-15 the last game. We came back out and did a great job on the glass."
That was mostly in part to Baker's hard work in the second half, grabbing nine rebounds and scoring six points. She finished in double figures for the first time since scoring 12 against Baylor on Jan. 18.
"The team and coaches have shown a lot of confidence in me the whole year and in the times I was in the trenches and not playing so well," Baker said. "They continued to show that confidence. I just want to keep playing well and improve in every aspect of my game."
Tech will host the third round game against San Diego (24-8) at 7 p.m., Thursday, back at United Spirit Arena. The Lady Raiders beat San Diego, 58-57, at Jenny Craig Pavilion on Dec. 30 during the Surf `N Slam Classic. Tech is 4-0 all-time against San Diego. The last time the two met in Lubbock was on Dec. 20, 1993.