Tulsa attempts to avoid the blues in Memphis
Memphis, TN (Sports Network) – The 11th-ranked Memphis Tigers are clearly
the class of Conference USA, and they will attempt to cruise past the
Tulsa Golden Hurricane as expected this evening.
Tulsa is a stellar 12-1 on its home floor this season, but the team has
lost all three of its true road games to date. The Golden Hurricane has
suffered back-to-back defeats recently, including a heart-breaking 69-67
setback to Houston in a home game on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Memphis has won its last seven outings to move to 15-3 overall
and 5-0 in C-USA action. Every triumph during the current streak has
come by double figures, including a 61-44 romp over East Carolina on
Saturday. Keep in mind that all 10 home games have resulted in victory thus
far for the Tigers.
Tulsa owns a 12-10 edge in the all-time series with Memphis, but the
Tigers recorded a 78-67 win in the most recent meeting last season.
Tulsa does not possess the type of player who is capable of routinely
taking over a game at the offensive end. Still, the team is averaging a solid
72.3 ppg thanks to steady contributions from several individuals. Rod Earls
leads Tulsa in scoring with 12.5 ppg, and Ben Uzoh checks in with 10.6 ppg.
Defensively, the Golden Hurricane is limiting its opponents to 61.4 ppg
on 39.7 percent shooting from the floor, an obvious key to the 12-5
overall record. In the narrow loss to Houston on Saturday, Uzoh tallied 18
points to pace Tulsa. Charles Ramsdell pitched in 13 points and 10
rebounds, while Ray Reese contributed 11 points. The Golden Hurricane
earned a 46-22 rebounding advantage, including a 16-4 edge on the
offensive boards, but the team committed 10 more turnovers than the
Memphis was forced to play East Carolina on Saturday without the services
of leading scorer Chris Douglas-Roberts, who was nursing an injured ankle.
The Tigers struggled mightily at the offensive end in his absence, as they
scored only 61 points on 30.9 percent shooting from the floor, including 4-
of-23 from the foul line. Memphis outscored the Pirates by a 23-8 margin
from the foul line, but the 23-of-39 effort left much to be desired. On a
positive note, the Tigers did play tremendous defense, as they limited
ECU to 36.2 percent shooting from the field while forcing 24 turnovers.
Jeremy Hunt scored 16 points to pace the offensive attack for Memphis.
Douglas-Roberts is netting 14.8 ppg this season on 56.4 percent shooting
from the field, and it remains uncertain if he will play tonight. If not,
Hunt (13.6 ppg) and Robert Dozier (12.6 ppg) will be asked to pick up the