With Friday’s win against Miami, Tulane’s women’s basketball team can possibly enter its first American Athletic Conference schedule with one loss.
However, the Green Wave (9-1) will have to get past Florida State (11-1) at 7 p.m. Monday at the Devlin Fieldhouse.
“They’re a really good team,” Tulane coach Lisa Stockton said. “They’ve been to the NCAA (tournament) numerous times in a row. I think they’re going to be a team that’s going to be up there in the ACC.”
Tulane has had a non-conference schedule that included three teams from the ACC, one from the Southeastern Conference and one from the Sun Belt. Stockton had a purpose with the tough slate.
“I think the better schedule you play nonconference certainly makes you learn a lot about yourself, makes you challenge yourself everyday,” Stockton said. “We put ourselves in the situation that we could do well in our conference. We hope to go to the NCAA tournament. I think that’s one thing we really wanted.”
With the five-game winning streak, reserves have also been contributing more, and one of those players is sophomore Courtnie Latham, who is third in assists with 22. That’s behind Jamie Kaplan’s team-leading 40 and Leslie Vorpahl’s 27.
“Our bench is getting confidence,” Stockton said. “We’re really able to learn a lot about our team.”
Kolby Morgan is Tulane’s leading scorer, averaging 14.1 points per game. The John Curtis product also leads the team in rebounds, averaging 5.9 per game.
Adut Bulgak leads the Seminoles averaging 15.4 points per game and 29 blocks. She has seven double-doubles.
While Tulane has been holding opponents to 53.8 points a game, Florida State has been allowing 57.2.
“I think it’s a great opportunity for our team,” Stockton said. “We just talked about it, it’s a great opportunity to finish up the nonconference and to make a statement about what our program’s about. They’re going to be a tough team. I think it’s going to be great to watch. “
While both Florida State and Tulane are looking to start conference play with just one loss, Stockton said the tougher non-league schedule has taught her a lot about her team.
Senior Tiffany Dale is seventh in the AAC with 12 blocked shots and envisions Tulane’s roll to continue.
“I think it’s very exciting,” Dale said. “I think with the momentum that we’re having with all these wins, our season is going to continue to grow and get better.”