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All players see action in 18-point win at home

After a 66-48 lead over the Houston Cougars with 2:34 left in the game Wednesday night at the Sun Dome, the crowd applauded as sophomore forward Alisia Jenkins made her way to the bench.  

The fans didn’t wait to voice their support of another double-double performance by Jenkins that resulted in 10 points and
16 rebounds.

“Alisia Jenkins’ motor was phenomenal,” coach Jose Fernandez said.

Jenkins was one of 15 different players who played against the Cougars during their 71-53 win. Of those 15 players, Jenkins joined sophomore guard Courtney Williams as the only two players to earn a double-double.

While the Bulls (11-9, 6-3) had a 13-point lead going into the second half, USF earned its biggest lead of the night with a 9-2 run, ignited by a 3-pointer from senior guard Inga Orekhova, causing a 18-point lead with 11:42 left in the game. 

Orekhova’s shot from beyond the arc, as well as two free throws, was followed by two layups from Williams on her way to a night that included 20 points and
10 rebounds.

Williams credited most of the work to her teammates as this game marked her seventh with 20 or more points. 

“My teammates gave me the ball,” Williams said. “Inga had five assists and I just kept on running.”

Fernandez told his team he wanted to create point separation coming out the gate, and the Bulls kept increasing their lead by playing to their strengths.  Their 16 second-chance points were made possible by the 19 offensive rebounds they had. The Bulls would end the game with 54 total rebounds, doubling Houston’s 27.

“One of the main goals that we wanted to do was attack and pound the glass,” Fernandez said.  “I thought we did a good job
of that.”

The 1,189 fans in attendance were most engaged after seeing players, such as freshman center Paige Cashin and freshman guard Neena Pacholke – both who have only played five games this season, come off the bench.  

Cashin scored a layup before returning to the ground after Pacholke found enough space in front of her defender to score a 3-pointer with 18 seconds left in the game.

Freshman guard Ariadna Pujol also came off the bench scoring 12 points.  While she made two of the team’s seven attempted  3-pointers, most of her points came from creating plays by the basket.

“I thought she was able to get to the rim and she got to (it),”  Fernandez said.  “She just didn’t finish, but she got fouled and made her free throws.”

Ten players came off the bench for USF, five of whom contributed 29 points toward the win. 

The Bulls will face their fifth ranked opponent of the season Feb. 2 in Kentucky, when they take on No. 5 Louisville.