by: Richard Jones Updated:Tulsa, Okla. – The Tulsa women scored 40 second-half points and pulled away from cross-city rival Oral Roberts for a 72-58 victory in the Annual Mayor’s Cup game on Tuesday night in front of 1,477 fans at the Donald W. Reynolds Center.
Tulsa improved to 3-1 overall with a three-game winning streak, while ORU fell to 1-4 on the season. The last time the Golden Hurricane began a season at 3-1 came in the 2009-10 campaign.
Tulsa was led by 19 points and 13 rebounds from sophomore Ashley Clark, while fellow sophomore Kelsee Grovey added 18 points and a team-high five assists. Junior Mariah Turner added 12 points and six rebounds. Clark scored 15 of her points in the second half, while Grovey tallied 13 second-half points to pace the Hurricane.
The Golden Eagles had also had three double-figure scorers as junior Jenni Bryan led the way with 15 points.
After leading by two points at halftime, Tulsa jumped out in the second half on an 8-1 run to take a 40-33 lead at the 17:49 mark as Kelsee Grovey connected on two straight three-pointers. The Hurricane increased its second-half lead to 11 points, 50-39, at the 11:57 mark on a layup by Erika Lane. ORU scored the next six points to make it 50-45 with 10:52 remaining in the game.
Tulsa pushed the lead back to 10 points at 55-45 by scoring the next five points and built its lead to 11 points at 60-49 with 6:22 left in the contest. ORU wouldn’t go away though, but Tulsa kept pace, not letting its lead slip under eight points.
Grovey’s third three-pointer of the second half gave Tulsa its largest margin at 70-56 with 1:09 remaining in the contest. Loren McDaniel closed out the scoring with a jumper at the 0:49 mark, giving the Hurricane its final 14-point victory.
The first half was a different story as there were four lead changes and five times where the game was tied. Five of the six first-half ties came in the first 7:20 of the contest with ties at 2-2, 4-4, 6-6, 8-8 and 12-12. At the 11:17 mark of the first half, ORU’s Alexis Wilson knocked down to free throws for a 14-12 lead and increased that lead to five points at 21-16 on a Jenni Bryan three-pointer.
The Hurricane then went on an 8-2 run to take only its third lead of the first 20 minutes at 24-23 on an Ashley Clark jumper. Tulsa held on to the lead until a three-pointer by ORU’s Dorottya Balla knotted the score at 30-30 with 2:01 to play. Tulsa’s Mariah Turner put through a layup with 0:29 remaining as the Hurricane took a 32-30 lead into intermission.
Ashley Clark led the Hurricane in the first half with 15 points, nine rebounds and two assists in 17 minutes, while the Golden Eagles were lead by Bryan’s 10 points.
In the first 20 minutes, Tulsa shot 39.4 percent from the field, while ORU had a 27.0 shooting percentage.