Sixth man Corey Henderson scored a game-high 22 points as the Tulsa Golden Hurricane beat the USF Bulls 79-67 in front of a small group of well-wishers at the Sun Dome Saturday.
Henderson made three 3-pointers and added four assists. He set up back-to-back threes by Pat Birt midway through the first half as Tulsa (11-7, 5-1 American) opened up a 30-15 lead.
The Bulls (6-12, 0-7 American) fought back as they usually do, with a 15-5 run to cut the halftime deficit to 35-30. Ruben Guerrero found enough space inside to score 16 points and grab 10 rebounds, while Troy Holston volume shot his way to 16 points of his own. Holston took a ridiculous 16 threes by himself, making five.
Although USF hung around for most of the second half, Tulsa was able to keep them at arm’s length. After a Sterling Taplin three-point play with a little under 12 minutes left put Tulsa up by six, USF never got any closer.
Missing Malik Fitts, who sat out the game with an ankle injury, USF didn’t have nearly enough depth to cope with Tulsa’s rotation. The Golden Hurricane used 12 players in the game to USF’s eight. They outrebounded the Bulls by five and got to the free throw line 38 times, thanks to 30 USF fouls. Put it this way - Jake Bodway only played 11 minutes and nearly fouled out.
It’s a very ugly season for USF, and it’s poised to get much uglier in the next stretch of games. The Bulls welcome UConn to Tampa on Wednesday night, then have to travel to Cincinnati (the only ranked team in the league) next weekend.