The Green Wave outscored the Golden Eagles 40-18 in the first 20 minutesNEW ORLEANS – A dominant first half was more than enough for the Tulane women’s basketball team to earn its sixth victory in seven games at Avron B. Fogelman Arena in the Devlin Fieldhouse on Saturday afternoon.The Green Wave (6-1) outscored Southern Miss (5-3) by a 40-18 count in the game’s first 20 minutes and did enough in the second half to hold on for a 71-54 victory. The win was Coach Lisa Stockton’s 499 in charge of the Green Wave.After outscoring the Golden Eagles by 7 in the first quarter, Tulane used a 19-2 run in the second quarter to pull way out in front. Tulane led by as many as 25 points in the second quarter before Southern Miss regrouped in the second half.Tulane had a very balanced night on offense with just two players in double-figure scoring. Sierra Cheatham topped the team with 13 points, and she was joined in double figures by Krystal Freeman’s 12 points. But all 10 players who saw game action put up at least 4 points in the game.Freeman was also Tulane’s leading rebounder with six boards, and senior Harlyn Wyatt and freshman Mia Heide added five apiece. Kaila Anderson led Tulane with five assists to reach 100 in her career, and Cheatham had a team-high two steals.The Green Wave started very hot, taking a 9-2 lead and forcing a Southern Miss timeout before three minutes had elapsed. Each team scored 7 points in the final seven minutes of the quarter, and Tulane held a 16-9 lead heading into the second period.That 7-point lead ballooned quickly in the second quarter as the team was on fire right from the first bounce. Tatyana Lofton had a layup and a 3-pointer as part of a 9-0 Green Wave run to begin things, and Southern Miss took a timeout to stem the bleeding.The timeout didn’t work, though, and the Green Wave scored the next 4 points after the break. A Southern Miss jumper broke up the 13-0 run, but Tulane scored the next 7 points after that to make it 36-11. The Green Wave rolled into halftime with a 40-18 lead.Southern Miss finally got its offense going in the second half, outscoring Tulane 18-14 in the third quarter and cutting the Green Wave’s lead to as little as 9 points with two minutes to play. From there, though, Tulane scored the game’s final 8 points on a Cheatham 3-pointer and five free throws from Erin Gutierrez and Anderson.The Green Wave are now 6-1 for the first time since the 2014-15 season. The team will its three-game homestand and look to give Coach Stockton her 500th Tulane win on Tuesday when Nicholls comes to Fogelman in Devlin. Tipoff against the Colonels is set for 7 p.m.
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