Lady Toppers Exit C-USA Championship with Loss to UAB
FRISCO, Texas — WKU women’s basketball fell, 74-62, in the second round of the Conference USA Championship to UAB on Wednesday in Frisco, Texas. The Lady Toppers move to 18-12 on the season with the loss.
“The kids kept fighting, I think we just ran out of gas in the fourth quarter,” said head coach Greg Collins. “We put a lot of effort and energy in the third quarter. We got in a spot where we were leading the game, but those turnovers jumped up and bit us. We didn’t get shots and that led to easy shots for them as well.”
Alexis Mead led WKU with 18 points, eight rebounds and two assists. Jaylin Foster had 16 points and seven rebounds for her ninth double digit performance of the season. Meral Abdelgawad added 12 points and Hope Sivori scored 11 points. Abdelgawad has scored in double digits in all but two games this season and has done so in 27 straight games. It was Sivori’s 11th time scoring 10-plus points this season.
Mead eclipsed 100 assists on the season with the pair of helpers. She’s only the seventh freshman in WKU history to record 100 assists in a season. She also moved to 326 total points on the season, which is ninth most scored by a WKU freshman in program history.
WKU fell behind early against the Blazers, but were able to stay within striking distance at the end of the second half, down 38-35. At the 6:31 mark of the third quarter, UAB took a 49-39 lead on a layup. The Lady Toppers then went on their biggest run of the day, scoring 13 unanswered points across three minutes of game time, to take a 52-49 lead. Seven of those 13 points came from Mead.
Foster made a three to open the fourth quarter, but the Blazers responded by outscoring WKU 22-5 the rest of the quarter to claim the win. After turning the ball over only three times in the first three quarters of the game, the Lady Toppers turned it over four times in two minutes midway through the fourth quarter that led to UAB’s run.
The young Lady Toppers had only three players log minutes that had played in the C-USA tournament previously in Abdelgawad, Sivori and Tori Hunter.