Brandon Swannegan scored a career-high 19 points in leading Tulsa to a 62-48 victory over Tulane Saturday night at the Donald W. Reynolds Center.
The Golden Hurricane improved to 14-7 on the season and 6-3 in American Athletic Conference action, while Tulane fell to 8-15 overall and 1-9 in conference play.
Swannegan also grabbed a team-high 11 rebounds for his second career double-double, while freshman Sterling Taplin added 12 points and James Woodard had 10 for the Hurricane. Tulane’s Louis Dabney was the only Green Wave player to tally double-digit points with 17.
“Brandon and Sterling played well. It was good to see Brandon have the game he had. It was just an outstanding job from Brandon, and obviously Sterling gained some really good minutes,” said Tulsa Head Coach Frank Haith.
Despite a season-worst 22 turnovers, Tulsa still managed to outscore the Green Wave off of turnovers 21-to-14, while forcing Tulane into 21 turnovers. Tulsa picked up its field goal percentage in the second half, shooting 61-percent from the field and 60-percent from three-point range in the final 20 minutes.
Tulsa ended the game shooting 45-percent from the field and 31-percent from three-point range. The Hurricane defense forced Tulane into 29-percent on 17-of-59 field goals and 20-perent from behind the arc, as the Green Wave made just 4-of-40 treys.
“Obviously, it was a gritty and hard fought game, and I thought our guys really played hard. It was tough for us to make shots in the whole first half, but I thought that we just stayed after it and our defense is what carried us,” said Haith.
Earlier in the week, Tulsa lost at Houston, 81-66, in a American Athletic Conference match.
Pat Birt scored 16 points and Shaquille Harrison put up 15 points to lead the Golden Hurricane (13-7, 5-3 American). TU shot 33 percent from the field, including 3-for-26 on 3-pointers. Galen Robinson Jr. scored 19 points to lead the Cougars (14-6, 4-4 American), which shot 47 percent from the field and held a 48-38 advantage in rebounds.
Tulsa committed just five turnovers, and tallied seven assists and four steals, forcing 11 Houston miscues. TU made 19-of-28 free throws, and UH made 21-of-25 foul shots. Woodard finished with 10 points, and Rashad Smith had seven points and a team-high eight rebounds.