July 14, 2024

Memphis Tigers’ Valiant Effort Falls Short Against the Mississippi State Bulldogs in Women’s Basketball

Memphis Tigers’ Valiant Effort Falls Short Against the Mississippi State Bulldogs in Women’s Basketball

The Memphis Women’s Basketball team faced off against the Mississippi State Bulldogs on Sunday afternoon in a heart-pounding game that demonstrated both teams’ sheer determination and strength. Despite several hard-fought comeback attempts, the Memphis Tigers were unable to surmount the Bulldogs’ potent offense, resulting in an 81-63 loss in their final regular-season match-up.

This defeat brings the Tigers’ overall record to 4-7 thus far on the season.

A Sluggish Start for the Tigers

The Tigers entered the game on a shaky note, struggling to find their offensive groove right from the start. The Bulldogs seized on this opportunity, quickly establishing an early lead. Jessika Carter of Mississippi State further exacerbated the Tigers’ predicament by stretching the Bulldogs’ lead to 11 points with a strategically executed layup with only 1:10 left in the first quarter. 

Despite these early setbacks, Madison Griggs injected some momentum into the Tigers’ game. She trimmed the deficit to 22-13 as the game moved into the second quarter, contributing two points to her game-high total of 24.

 Second-Quarter Surge and a Glimmer of Hope

The second quarter saw the Tigers come alive, driven by a newfound energy and determination. Madison Griggs and Destyne Jackson emerged as the driving forces of this resurgence, combining their efforts to bring the Tigers within a mere five points of their adversaries.

Griggs landed a critical three-pointer, while Jackson followed up with back-to-back jumpers. The result was a sequence of play that reinvigorated the Tigers and kept their hopes alive.

Despite the Tigers’ impressive rally, the Bulldogs managed to maintain their lead. Both teams traded points throughout the quarter, with Mississippi State closing the first half with an 8-4 run, taking a 37-28 lead into halftime.

Bulldogs Extend Their Lead

The Bulldogs roared into the second half with palpable intensity, extending their lead by 15 points within the first few minutes of the third quarter. Refusing to be left behind, the Tigers once again rallied with baskets from Griggs, Aliyah Green, and Raven Sims. 

Alasia Smith, in a moment of brilliance, landed a crucial three-pointer, cutting into the Bulldogs’ lead and setting the stage for what promised to be an electrifying final quarter. The score stood at 54-45 in favor of Mississippi State.

 Fourth Quarter Battle and Bulldogs’ Victory

The Bulldogs started the fourth quarter with the end in sight, shooting an impressive 69% from the field. But the Tigers, displaying their characteristic spirit and tenacity, refused to back down. Facing a daunting deficit of 16 points, they launched a 9-3 run, forcing the Bulldogs to call for a timeout with just 2:51 left on the clock.

Despite the Tigers’ gallant attempts to mount a comeback, the Bulldogs held their ground. They sealed their victory by sinking six free throws in the game’s dying moments, securing an 81-63 win.

 Standout Performances and Looking Toward the Future

Madison Griggs led all scorers with a game-high of 24 points, including an impressive six three-pointers. Alasia Smith, who was on the court for a full 40 minutes, made a significant contribution by grabbing a team-high 15 rebounds, eight of them on the offensive end.

 What’s To Come

The Tigers will take a short break before diving into conference play. Their first game will be against Tulsa on Saturday, Dec. 30, inside the Elma Roane Fieldhouse. The tip-off is scheduled for 2 p.m., with coverage available on ESPN+. 

Despite the recent setback, the Tigers will undoubtedly look to bounce back strong in their conference play opener. This game may have ended in defeat, but the spirit and resilience exhibited by the Memphis Tigers promise an exciting season ahead.

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