Taggart sparks Memphis past TulsaJan 24, 2008 - 7:11 AM TULSA, Oklahoma (Ticker) -- Shawn Taggart scored 12 of his 14 points in the second half to lead top-ranked Memphis to a 56-41 victory over Tulsa on Wednesday in a Conference USA matchup.
Memphis (18-0, 5-0 Conference USA) remained one of just two undefeated Division I teams in the country along with Kansas. It did so thanks to a big second half from Taggart and some suffocating defense.
The Tigers led just 28-24 at the half thanks mainly to guards Chris Douglas-Roberts and freshman Derrick Rose. Douglas Roberts scored 11 of his 20 points in the first half and Rose added 10 of his 14.
In the second half, Memphis shot the ball better and clamped down on Tulsa, limiting the Golden Hurricane to 22 percent (6-of-27) shooting.
"I give my kids a lot of credit for how hard they played tonight," Tulsa coach Doug Wojcik said. "I thought Shawn Taggart beat us to some extent. He made timely shots for them."
Taggart scored six straight points to give the Tigers a 40-31 lead with 11:27 to play. He hit a 3-pointer with 5:33 to go to put Memphis in front 51-38.
Taggart's play was needed because the Tigers did not have another player do much at all. Robert Dozier was 1-of-7 from the field and had three points and Joey Dorsey had only two but did add 19 rebounds and three blocks.
"Robert Dozier laid an egg today, it was the worst I have seen him play and it was because they were physical," Memphis coach John Calipari said. "But all of a sudden you go with Shawn Taggart and Shawn Taggart is like a monster. That is the greatest thing about having depth and having a lot of guys that can play."
The Tigers have risen to the top spot with the help of a weak conference and could stay there for some time. Memphis has now won 28 consecutive conference games, including five this season, the first four by an average of 32.0 points.
Calvin Walls scored 12 points and was the only player in double figures for the Golden Hurricane (9-7, 1-3), who had won seven of their last nine games.
"I think that was our best effort against Memphis," Wojcik said. "We really had a chance tonight."
Memphis has won five straight against Tulsa and now leads the all-time series 13-12.
"I'm not sure if anybody does a better job of preparing their team for us then what Doug does," Calipari said. "They did a great job."
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