USF women fall to Friars, drop to 14-13
I'm hesitant to acknowledge the existence of a Women's NIT bubble, but if there were such a thing, USF's women's basketball team would be uncomfortably seated upon it.
The Bulls lost for the fifth time in six games Tuesday night, falling 72-62 to Providence to drop to 14-13 and 5-9 in Big East play. USF got season highs from guards KaNeisha Saunders (23) and junior Leondra Doomes-Stephens (22), but 16 first-half turnovers were enough to keep the Bulls from getting back into the game. Center Jessica Lawson, who went scoreless Saturday in a loss to West Virginia, had a double-double with 10 points and 12 rebounds, but struggled from the field, hitting 3 of 16 attempts.
USF for the fourth game in a row without three players, including two of its top three scorers in guard Janae Stokes and forward Sequoyah Griffin. The players remain on indefinite suspension for an unspecified violation of team rules, and with just two regular-season games left, may be done for the season.
The Bulls have been to the postseason six years in a row, a streak that includes five WNIT appearances. USF likely needs at least one more win to keep the streak alive.
Providence (16-11, 7-7) picked up a key road win, getting 24 and 17 points, respectively, from guards Chelsea Marandola and Mi-Khida Hankins.