Dec. 21, 2001
NEW ORLEANS, La. - Tulane University once again used its press to wear down an opponent, thwarting an impressive Lipscomb University comeback bid, on route to a 77-64 victory on Friday evening at Fogelman Arena.
The Green Wave improves to 7-1 on the season. It is just the fourth time in the last 50 years that Tulane had a mark of 7-1 or better. Lipscomb drops to 2-8 on the year.
Despite committing a season-high 28 turnovers, Tulane shot 52.7 percent (29-of-55) from the field, while holding the Bisons to 34.9 percent (22-of-63) shooting. The Wave also held a 44-31 advantage on the boards.
Junior Brandon Brown (Houma, La.) led the Wave with 16 points and nine rebounds, while junior Waitari Marsh (Chicago, Ill.) added 12 points and six assists. Nick Sinville (Shreveport, La.) and freshman Marcus Kinzer (Nashville, Tenn.) were also in double figures with 11 and 10 points, respectively.
"The ball was slippery tonight," Tulane head coach Shawn Finney said. "We were very lackadaisical with the ball and we were not making the easy plays. Every night is a test and tonight we learned that we're still young and we can't overlook any team.
"Fortunately, we shot the ball well," the Wave mentor continued. "Twenty-eight turnovers showed that we were out of rhythm. We couldn't get going. We went up 34-17, then we relaxed offensively and defensively."
Tulane held a 44-36 lead with 16:41 remaining in the game. However, careless turnovers and poor shooting saw the Wave go over five minutes without a point. Meanwhile, Lipscomb managed seven points to cut the Wave edge to one at 44-43 with 12:58 to go.
Wave freshman Karl Hollingsworth (Jonesboro, Ga.) finally found the bottom of the net at the 11:30 mark, poutting back his own miss to make it 46-43. However, Lispcomb's Jeff Dancy (game-high 25 points) buried a three-pointer to knot the score for the first time since 2-2.
However, three free throws from freshman Ben Benfield (River Ridge, La.) and a Kinzer layup ignited the Wave. In addition, Tulane's press began to force fatigue and turnovers as the Wave took charge, building a 10-point edge at 63-53 with 5:11 remaining.
"I thought the press was effective," Finney said. "It created some steals for us. But we would get a steal and throw it right back to them."
Lipscomb would cut it to five with 2:48 to go, but Tulane settled into a groove and cruised to the victory down the stretch.
The Wave had not played for 10 days due to a break for final exams.
"The break (for finals) is tough," Finney said. "It's been 11 days. It's hard. Plus, everybody all week has been talking about Georgia Tech and it's easy to get sidetracked. We are looking forward to Georgia Tech, it's a big game against a name team."
Tulane returns to action on Sunday evening with a nationally-televised game at Georgia Tech. The contest tips off at 7 p.m. (Central) and will be broadcast live throughout the nation on Fox Sports Net.