Feb. 6, 2010
NEW ORLEANS - Tulane's men's basketball team fell behind early to SMU on Saturday afternoon and could never catch back up, falling to the Mustangs, 66-48, in a Conference USA contest in Fogelman Arena.
"Give credit to SMU today," Tulane head coach Dave Dickerson said. "They played harder than we did and gave more of an effort consistently for 40 minutes and that was the tell tale of the game. It was our lack of effort and lack of toughness that put us in the situation where we lost by 18 at home and got outrebounded by 24."
The Green Wave (7-15, 2-7 C-USA) scored the first two points of the game for the only lead on the afternoon and SMU (11-11, 4-4 C-USA) scored 19 of the next 21 points to hold an 19-4 lead less than eight minutes into the game. The Mustangs then built a 24-point lead, 35-11, with 4:47 remaining in the half before Tulane closed out the first 20 minutes on a 10-0 run to trail 35-21 at the break.
Vianney finished the game with eight points, including those two 3-pointers.
SMU built the lead back to 16 points with the first basket of the second half and kept a double digit lead until a pair of Kendall Timmons' free throws coupled with a 3-pointer from Mayhane cut the lead to 45-36 with 10:56 remaining. The Green Wave then cut the lead down to six, 47-41, on Timmons 3-point play with a lay-up and free throw with 8:44 remaining. The Mustangs rallied to score four straight to retake a double figure lead and Tulane would not get any closer than seven the rest of the way.
The Mustangs connected on eight free throws in the final four minutes to make the final spread 18 points.
Tulane managed only 17 rebounds in the game and SMU pulled down 41, including 13 offensive boards that turned into 13 second chance points. The Green Wave shot just 30.6 percent from the floor in the game and hit six of 23 3-pointers. The Mustangs hit 48.8 percent from the floor and knocked down 19 of 20 free throws.
"We have to give a better effort," Dickerson added. "We were undersized on Wednesday night on the road and we beat a team that was bigger and more physical, but I thought our effort level was as good as it was all year. To turn that around 48 hours afterward and not give the type of effort that this program and this arena deserves is just mindboggling to me as a coach."
Timmons led Tulane with 14 points, while Jordan Callahan added nine and Holmes had seven points. David Booker led the Green Wave with four rebounds. Papa Dia led SMU with 17 points and 16 rebounds, while Derek Williams posted a game-high 18 points and Robert Nyakundi had 14 points.
Tulane's defense did collected 14 steals and force 20 turnovers and resulted in 30 points.
The Green Wave hit the road for a pair of Conference games next week, visiting East Carolina at 6 p.m. CST on Wednesday and UCF at 3 p.m. CST on Saturday.
- Kendall Timmons scored in double figures for the sixth time this season and the eighth game of his career with his 14 points today.