MOBILE, Ala. - Not quite as deep and experienced as its opponent, the Southern women’s basketball team nonetheless had a two-point halftime lead against South Alabama.
Then USA used its depth, and a little extra energy, to pull ahead for good.
South Alabama got 14 points from Camille Reynolds and used a late surge to defeat Southern 57-44 at the Mitchell Center on Tuesday night.
It was the second comeback win in as many games for USA (2-0), which rallied to defeat UCF in triple overtime in its season opener Saturday.
“In the first half ... I think Southern’s energy level was a little bit higher - not overwhelmingly higher, but it was higher than ours,” USA coach Rick Pietri said. “And fortunately in the second half, our kids responded and brought the right energy level in the second half and put us in position to win the game.”
SU lost despite holding a 38-33 advantage in rebounds and holding USA to 37-percent shooting from the floor.
Senior post player Jamie Floyd led Southern with 12 points and 12 rebounds. Essence Hopkins and Adrian Sanders had 11 points each for SU (1-1), which played its first road game with six newcomers on this year’s team.
“I thought what happened in the second half was, they won the numbers game. Our kids just got tired,” 12th-year coach Sandy Pugh said. “But we played together the whole game. I’m really excited about this team.”
Southern hosts Lamar at 5:30 p.m. Monday. It is the Jaguars’ last home game before Southwestern Athletic Conference play begins Jan. 3.