TAMPA – Inga Orekhova set a new career-high with 23 points on Friday night, helping the Bulls stay undefeated with an 85-58 victory over the University of North Dakota (0-4). Orekhova hit 57% of her shots on the night, including five from beyond the arc.
USF (4-0) started slowly, but a late surge leading into halftime helped lift the Bulls to their highest point total of the young season.
With 7:28 remaining in the first half, USF was down 15-14 having only shot 28.6% from the floor. The Bulls committed seven turnovers in the first 13 minutes of play.
The teams were tied at 22 with less than four minutes to go in the half, but back-to-back Andrea Smith three-pointers launched USF on a 14-4 run. The Bulls headed into the lockeroom up 36-26.
USF picked up right where it left off after the break, as Smith and Orekhova each knocked down a trey to open the second half.
Along with her 23 points, Orekhova grabbed seven rebounds and posted two assists and a pair of steals.
The Smith sisters joined Orekhova in double digits, as Andrea finished with 19, while Andrell netted 17. Akila McDonald grabbed eight boards, as USF out-rebounded UND 49-36.
The Bulls lost Kaneisha Saunders to injury early on, as she was forced to exit less than a minute into the game.
Megan Lauck led the North Dakota offense with 17 points, while Madi Buck added 11.
The Bulls will hit the road to face off against UNC-Asheville on Wednesday at 7 p.m.