Lady Frogs Lose Tough Road Battle at Cincinnati
Jan. 17, 2003
CINCINNATI, Ohio - The TCU Lady Frogs (7-8, 0-2 C-USA) were unable to hang on as the Cincinnati Bearcats (12-3, 2-0) rallied to win 68-61 at the Shoemaker Center on Friday night. Senior Tricia Payne banged down four threes in the first half and another in the second to tie her career high for three-pointers with five for the night (also: vs. Vanderbilt, Dec. 28, 2002).
In the first half, the Lady Frogs took control early, outscoring Cincinnati 6-0 to start the contest. With 8:41 to play, sophomore Sandora Irvin scored on a lay-up to give the Lady Frogs an eight-point lead. Several times the Bearcats cut the Frog lead to one, only to see TCU stretch the advantage once again. TCU took a four-point lead into the lockerroom at halftime after UC's Debbie Merrill scored with no time remaining after sitting on the bench in foul trouble for much of the half.
Merrill continued where she'd left off at halftime, as she scored six of the Bearcats first eight second-half points. A three-pointer by Valerie King with 15:38 left gave Cincinnati its first lead of the night. The Bearcats outscored the Lady Frogs 12-9 over the next five and a half minutes. UC was able to push to an eight-point margin with 5:58 to play, but TCU continued to chip away at the spread.
With 47 seconds left, junior Ebony Shaw connected on a lay-up to make it a one-point game. Cincinnati's K.B. Sharp dropped in a lay-up of her own with 30 seconds to play. However, that score followed by a pair of free throws from King and a set from Sharp, along with three missed shots by Frogs gave UC the 68-61 victory.
"We didn't make plays down the stretch tonight and Cincinnati did," said head coach Jeff Mittie. "I thought late we gave up offensive rebounds and then fouled them, letting them score."
Payne led all players with 21 points, while junior Tiffany Evans had six boards. Irvin posted three blocks for the evening.
TCU finishes its road trip with a visit to Louisville for a game on Sunday, Jan. 19. The game will be broadcast in the metroplex at 1:00 p.m. Sunday on KLDT (Ch. 55) with Brian Estridge and Marcy Girton calling the action. Home C-USA action starts Friday, Jan. 24 for the Lady Frogs when they entertain East Carolina at 7:00 p.m. in Daniel-Meyer Coliseum.