Tulane’s women’s basketball team continued its surge Monday night as it defeated North Carolina State 60-51 at Devlin Fieldhouse.
The Green Wave (4-0) took a 52-41 lead, the first double-figures advantage of the game, when Jamie Kaplan sank two free throws with 3:36 left.
The Wolfpack cut the lead to 54-49 with about one minute left when Miah Spencer made a layup.
From there, the Green Wave finished with a 6-2 scoring run.
“We weren’t shooting well, but I was really happy with our defensive intensity,” Green Wave coach Lisa Stockton said. “It was one of those games that sometimes the ball doesn’t fall. I thought we did a really good job of just defensively being able to crack down on them.”
Freshman Kolby Morgan led the Green Wave with 15 points and a game-high eight rebounds. Jamie Kaplan had 13 points and Danielle Blagg scored 12.
For the Wolfpack (4-1), Len’Nique Brown had a team-high 14 points, while Spencer had 11.
“I think it’s good to beat these teams from good conferences,” Stockton said. “They’re physical, they’re very athletic. We went up to LSU, they were very good rebounders. They give us different challenges. I felt like our players were really focused for both of these games. We wanted to prove something, that we could play with these guys.”
The Green Wave had a 41.2 field-goal percentage compared with the Wolfpack’s 30.8. Tulane out-rebounded N.C. State 37-35. However, the Wolfpack led with 77.8 percent free-throw shooting and made a game-high 31.3 percent of their 3-point shots.
“We knew N.C. State was going to come out with a lot of pressure, especially defensively” Kaplan said. “We just kind of made the focus of just coming out strong to start both the first half and the second half. I think that really carried us throughout the whole game.”
While Tulane had an edge in rebounding, containing N.C. State’s post players was important.
“We played to our ability to make sure that we stayed in the gap and we took away their post players as much as we could,” Tiffany Dale said. “We knew that was going to be a big factor. “
Neither team had much of advantage until the 9:57 mark of the first half when N.C. State’s Chelsea Nelson sank a 3-pointer on the lower left for a 17-11 lead.
Tulane started to close that deficit when Leslie Vorpahl made a jumper to cut the lead to 18-13 with 9:05 left in the first. AFTER a Blagg 3-pointer a minute later, the Wave cut the lead to 18-16.
With 4:12 left, Morgan made a layup then finished the 3-point play to give Tulane a 19-18 lead.