Ashley Clark scored 20 points, leading quartet of double-digit scorers, as Tulsa defeated Valparaiso 84-70 Saturday afternoon at the Reynolds Center.
Playing on the backend of a doubleheader with the men, Clark and other players made impressive plays while dominating the Crusaders.
Kelsee Grovey finished with 13 points for the Golden Hurricane, Kadan Brady sank 13 and Mariah Turner posted 12.
The Golden Hurricane scored the first seven points and moved out to a 29-17 lead in the first half. It would lead 33-24 at intermission.
“When we went to New York, we played together with a different type of feeling,” Clark said. “We finally started to mesh, and we’re doing at the right time, right before conference play. We were all trying to get looks for each other. Ultimately, we were playing team ball.”
Tulsa (6-5) had previously played in the Fordham Holiday Classic earlier in the week in Bronx, New York, where it lost to Harvard and beat UNCG.
The Golden Hurricane would explode in the second half, with Stevi Parker hitting a pair of 3s from the right corner and Clark getting a fastbreak in the frontcourt. She was also fouled on the play, which permitted her a free shot, which she made to make it 52-35 with 14:26 left in the game.
Free throws by Liesl Spoerl gave TU its largest lead at 69-49 with over six minutes left.
Liz Horton led Valparaiso with 20 points. Charae Richardson scored 18 and Abby Dean finished with 14.
Tulsa finished the game shooting 42 percent (27-of-65) from the field, 35 percent (6-of-17) from 3-point range and 83 percent (24-of-29) from the free throw line. It outrebounded the Crusaders 39-36.
Valparaiso shot 45 percent (26-of-58) in field goals, 38 percent (9-of-24) in 3-pointers and was 82 percent (9-of-11) from the free throw line.
TU travels to the road the meet UTSA in its Conference USA opener at 7 p.m. Wednesday.