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USF Men’s and Women’s Basketball Both Victorious On Friday

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While we were all watching that epic in Orlando, USF’s basketball teams took care of business elsewhere in the state.

NCAA Womens Basketball: AAC Conference Tournament-USF vs Connecticut David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

USF men’s and women’s basketball both picked up victories on Friday afternoon. The men dispatched Arkansas State 72-61 to move to 4-2 in their inaugural season, while the women hammered Washington State 82-45 in the first round of the Gulf Coast Showcase in Estero. They actually set some records in this game, so let’s start with their performance.

That’s right, USF didn’t allow a single point to the Cougars in the first quarter. It’s the first time since quarters were established in NCAA women’s basketball that the Bulls have blanked an opponent for the entire 10 minutes. By halftime, USF’s lead grew to 35-8, tying a school record (set on four other occasions) for the fewest points given up to a Division I opponent in a half. With the entire second half reduced to garbage time, USF easily saw out the game.

Kitija Laksa led all scorers with 23 points. Maria Jespersen added 15, while Laura Ferreira chipped in 14 points and nine rebounds. Enna Pehadzic also made her USF debut after missing last season with a knee injury. She played 11 minutes and scored seven points.

A much bigger test awaits Saturday night in Estero as the 17th-ranked Bulls face off against #6 Notre Dame at 7:30 p.m.

The men played a burnoff game in the Hoosier Tip-Off Classic Friday afternoon in front of a small gathering of people who couldn’t get football tickets. Malik Martin led the way with a double-double as the Bulls knocked off Arkansas State.

Martin was 9-for-11 from the field and also blocked three shots. USF was all over the Red Wolves down low, scoring 42 points in the paint. (The Bulls only made one of 10 three-point attempts.) Tulio Da Silva (13), Payton Banks (12), and Stephan Jiggetts (10) all scored in double figures for USF. Deven Simms led Arkansas State with 15 points.

The final game of the Hoosier Tip-Off Classic will be against Eastern Michigan on Sunday afternoon at 4:00 p.m. in the Sun Dome.