The Bulls (16-6, 5-4) climbed above the .500 mark for the first time this season after defeating Providence College, 82-54, on Sunday, in a game pushed back twice because of a noreaster named Nemo.
The game, originally scheduled for Saturday afternoon, was pushed to Saturday evening and then to Sunday afternoon, but the delay had no effect on the Bulls play.
USF continued a shooting streak established in last weeks 18-point win against Pittsburgh, where every member of the starting five scored in double figures. Three of the five starters, including junior guard Inga Orekhova, freshman forward Alisia Jenkins and senior guard Andrea Smith, delivered repeat performances.
Orekhova led the team in scoring with a game-high 21 points and hit five of eight shots from outside the three-point arc. Jenkins dropped 16 points, came down with 12 rebounds and recorded her second consecutive double-double, while Smith contributed 13 points, continuing her quest to become the Big Easts lead scorer. She is currently ranked third in the conference.
USFs first half shooting performance resembled Nemos frosty climate conditions.
The Bulls shot a low 32 percent from the field and were outrebounded 24-23 by a Providence team that played without sophomore forward Chanise Baldwin, the Big Easts 17th leading rebounder.
Despite this, USF managed to take a 28-23 lead into the half. USF may have been in the lead, but cach Jose Fernandez said he was unhappy with the teams initial effort.
To be honest, I thought we sleep-walked in the first half, Hernandez said.
USF came out firing on all cylinders in the second half. The Bulls shot 47 percent from the floor and led Providence by as many 36 points with under two minutes left in the game. Freshman guard Courtney Williams scored all 15 of her points in the half and helped the Bulls outscore the Friars, 54-31.
Due to the inclement weather conditions generated by Nemo, USFs next home game versus St. Johns has been pushed from Tuesday to Wednesday at 4 p.m. Barring any unforeseen weather conditions, the Bulls will travel back home today and prepare for the game.
Fernandez said he is thankful for the extra day off.
It would have been unfair for us to play St. Johns on Tuesday, he said.