TAMPA — Kitija Laksa made six 3-pointers and had 24 points and No. 20 USF defeated Houston 73-49 on Wednesday night.
Laksa was 8-of-17 from the floor and made 6 of 11 3-pointers to lead the Bulls (14-5, 7-2 American Athletic). Courtney Williams added 16 points on 7-of-13 shooting and grabbed 11 rebounds for her eighth double double this season.
Williams climbed past Shantia Grace to No. 2 on the USF career scoring list with 1,953 points.
"I'm very proud of my team," Laksa said. "We played well, shared the ball, and played unselfish. We're just getting and being more successful."
Since the Bulls' loss at Memphis on Jan. 20, they have outscored opponents by an average margin of 31.5 points.
Alecia Smith led the Cougars with 11 points. Houston (4-15, 0-8) shot just 30 percent and made 5 of 21 3-pointers (24 percent) in losing for the ninth straight time.
Laksa scored 10 in an 18-0 run to give USF a 31-12 second-quarter lead. The lead stayed comfortably in double figures, with the Bulls taking their biggest at 29 points in the final minute.
"I thought the biggest thing for us was the second quarter," Fernandez said. "We took care of the ball, we were very unselfish, we shared it, we found people at the end of our break and that was good to see."
NO. 1 UCONN 94, TULSA 30: Breanna Stewart had 24 points and 10 rebounds and Moriah Jefferson and Katie Lou Samuelson added 14 points each for the visiting Huskies (19-0, 9-0 American), who won their 56th straight game.
NO. 4 BAYLOR 69, TEXAS TECH 43: Nina Davis scored 12 of her 18 in the third quarter, and the host Bears (20-1, 7-1 Big 12) extended their conference record with a 16th straight 20-win season. Davis also had 12 rebounds for her second double double of the season as Baylor beat the Raiders for the 10th straight time in a series Texas Tech still leads 47-35.
NO. 5 MARYLAND 89, PENN ST. 53: Shatori Walker-Kimbrough had 25 points and Brionna Jones 17 points and 12 rebounds for the Terrapins (18-2, 7-1 Big Ten), who won their sixth straight game and remained unbeaten on the road.
NO. 6 TEXAS 70, KANSAS 46: Imani Boyette had 16 points and 10 rebounds to help the host Longhorns (19-1, 8-1 Big 12) earn the 1,000th win in program history. Boyette, who had her eighth double double in nine conference games, also had four blocks while playing just 21 minutes. Brooke McCarty added 13 points as Texas took command with a 23-0 push bridging the second and third quarters.
NO. 18 MICH. ST. 68, PURDUE 56: Aerial Powers scored a season-high 25 and grabbed six rebounds to lead the host Spartans (15-4, 6-2 Big Ten), who have three in a row and 11 of 13. Powers shot 10-of-16 and hit 4 of 5 free throws. She had 15 points in the first half as Michigan State took a 37-24 lead.
NO. 21 OKLA. 57, NO. 24 W. VA. 54: Peyton Little scored all of her 23 in the second half, and the host Sooners (14-5, 5-3 Big 12) erased a 32-20 halftime deficit against the Mountaineers (16-5, 5-3).
ECKERD 63, SAINT LEO 48: Margaret Sundberg had 14 points for the visiting Tritons (10-7, 5-4 Sunshine State), who blew it open with a 9-0 run to open the second half. Chelsy Springs had 15 points and 10 rebounds for the Lions (4-15, 1-9).
FLA. TECH 49, TAMPA 46: Juliana Cavallaro had 10 points and seven rebounds for the visiting Spartans (11-9, 5-5 SSC), who got within a point on Cavallaro's 3-pointer with 16 seconds left before the Panthers' Delise Williams hit two free throws to seal it.
ARKANSAS 74, NO. 5 TEXAS A&M 71: Moses Kingsley had 18 points and 11 rebounds, Dusty Hannahs and Anthlon Bell scored 17 each and the visiting Razorbacks ended a 10-game winning streak by the Aggies (17-3, 7-1 SEC).
NO. 16 LOUISVILLE 91, VA. TECH 83: Damion Lee had 29 points and the visiting Cardinals (17-3, 6-1 ACC) hit 12 of 18 3-pointers to overcome foul trouble. Lee hit his first six 3-pointers and Trey Lewis made four in the second half.
NO. 20 KENTUCKY 88, MISSOURI 54: Tyler Ulis scored 20, Derek Willis added a career-best 18 and the host Wildcats (16-4, 6-2 SEC) used an early 20-0 run to blow it open and improve to 9-0 against the Tigers with their third straight win overall.
SAINT LEO 87, ECKERD 84: Caleb Stewart and Marcus Dewberry had 22 points each and Tyreece Brice added 21 as the host Lions (13-7, 6-4 Sunshine State) handed the Tritons (17-3, 8-1) their first conference loss.
TAMPA 66, FLA. TECH 60: Marcel Robinson had 16 points and Austin Rettig 15 for the Spartans (6-13, 2-8 SSC), who held off the Panthers at the free-throw line for their first road victory of the season.