|By The Numbers
||The number of Tigers in double-digits scoring
||Ariel Hearn's new career high in points.
||The number of Memphis turnovers.
Memphis (3-5) fell to Illinois (5-4), 73-65, at the Elma Roane Fieldhouse on Sunday. Three Tigers recorded double-figures as the Tigers dropped their fourth game in a row.
Trailing 14-10 in the first half, Devin Mack drained her first three-pointer donning the Blue and Gray to pull the Tigers within one. The Illini responded with a pair of lay-ups by Ivory Crawford and Karisma Penn to pull back ahead 18-13.
The Tigers then mounted a charge, scoring six points in just one minute of play. Asianna Fuqua-Bey, who recorded a career-high of 10 points, sank a lay-up at 8:35 to cut the Illinois lead to three. Nicole Dickson then drained a trey followed by a jumper to give Memphis the lead at 20-18.
Illinois responded with a lay-up by Crawford to knot the game at 20. Eighteen seconds later, Mack sank her second three-pointer of the half, to once again give the Tigers the lead 23-20.
Trailing 27-24 with 2:51 on the clock, Illinois went on nine-point run to regain the lead 33-27. Withunder 40 seconds left to play in the half, Ariel Hearn snagged a defensive rebound, taking the ball coast-to-coast for a lay-up to pull the Tigers within in four at what proved to be the halftime score of 29-33.
In the second half, Dickson notched two points out of the gate, cutting the Illini lead to two. Illinois responded with a three-pointer by Crawford to further extend its lead 36-31. Jaymie Jackson then fired a jumper keeping the Tigers within three. Following Jackson’s jumper, Illinois embarked on a four-minute 14 point run, cushioning its lead 50-33.
With under a 1:30 left to play in the game, Jamila Ajnanaku notched five points, draining a three-pointer followed by a lay-up for a career high. Hearn followed with a trey, bringing the Tigers within seven, their closest margin of the second half.
Hearn set a new career-high, leading Memphis with 18 points in the game. Dickson led the Tigers with seven rebounds, two blocks and four steals. Hearn and Dickson each led in assists with three each.
For Illinois, Penn led in points with 21. Penn and Smith led in rebounds with nine each. Amber Moore led in assists with five. Penn, Smith, Crawford, Moore, and Kersten Magrum led in steals with two each. Crawford, Moore and Nia Oden each notched one block to lead the Illini.
The Tigers return to action Friday against Alabama A&M at the Elma Roane Fieldhouse, with tipoff set for 7 p.m. (CT). For more information on the University of Memphis women’s basketball program and all Tigers athletics, please visit GoTigersGo.com.