Alicia Froling’s Historic Performance Paces Mustangs Past Cincinnati

Filed under: SMU Women's Basketball,Sports |

CINCINNATI (SMU)Alicia Froling became the first player in SMU history to score at least 30 points and grab at least 20 rebounds, as the SMU women’s basketball team rolled over Cincinnati, 73-55, in the Fifth Third Arena Wednesday night. Froling scored a career-high 33 points and grabbed an SMU-record 22 rebounds en route to her 14th-career double-double and ninth of the season.

photo from smumustangs.com

photo from smumustangs.com

Froling, a 6-3 forward, is now tied for 12th all-time in points scored in a game, matching D-dra Rucker and Keena Mays, who finished with 33 points in a game in 2001 and 2012, respectively. The 22 rebounds is the third highest in the American Athletic Conference history, and eclipses the previous SMU record of 21, which was shared by three Mustangs: Froling, who matched it earlier this season against then-No. 11 Texas A&M, Felicia Bluitt and Christine Elliott, who managed the feat in 1986 and 2009, respectively.

“I was annoyed that I didn’t break the record at A&M, and it’s something that has been on my mind,” Froling said postgame. “I came in focused, and I knew it was a game I could excel in. I’ve been working on my game, especially my outside shot since it hasn’t been falling. It just came together today, and it was a good team win. Hopefully we can carry the momentum forward.”

After trailing 3-2 with eight minutes to play in the first quarter, the Mustangs (9-10, 4-4 The American) used a 19-6 run to dominate the first quarter and outscore Cincinnati (6-13, 2-6 The American) 21-9 over the first 10 minutes. The Mustangs opened the second quarter with a 9-0 run to expand their lead to 21, 30-9. The Bearcats chipped their deficit down to 15, 32-17, scoring seven unanswered points with four minutes left in the first half. The Mustangs finished the second quarter with 9-4 run to expand their lead to 20, taking a 41-21 lead into halftime.

Froling led all scorers with 23 points and 12 rebounds in the opening first half, converting 10-of-19 first half attempts from the field.

Trailing 45-23 with 8:46 left in the third quarter, the Bearcats chipped away at the 22 point deficit, going on a 13-2 run to cut the lead to 11, 47-36 with five minutes left in the third quarter. SMU answered going on a 14-2 run to close the quarter and stretched its lead back to 21, 61-40. The Bearcats outscored the Mustangs 15-12 in the final 10 minutes, but the deficit was too great to overcome.

Froling finished the game going 13-of-26 from the field, 2-for-4 from beyond the 3-point arc and 5-for-5 from the free-throw-line. Sophomore guard Stephanie Collins added 10 points for SMU going 5-for-7 from the field, while grabbing six rebounds. Senior guard Gabrielle Wilkinswas a point shy of reaching double-figures, and tallied eight rebounds.

Cincinnati was held to 30.5 percent shooting, 18-of-59, including 5-of-20 from behind the 3-point arc. The Mustangs outscored the Bearcats 40-22 in the paint and 16-7 off of second change points. SMU out-rebounded the Bearcats, 50-28.

SMU returns home and plays three of the next four games in Moody Coliseum, including its second top-25 team in three games, hosting No. 20/18 USF Sunday. ESPNU will televise the game, and fans can get tickets at 214-SMU-GAME (214-768-4263) or by visiting SMUMustangs.com/tickets.