TAMPA, -The University of South Florida women's basketball team fell to visiting St. John's on Wednesday night at the Sun Dome, 80-60.
The Bulls, who drop to 10-16 overall and 1-11 in BIG EAST play, were led in scoring by Andrea Smith with 27 points, while twin-sister Andrell added 12 points. The 27-point outing was the second-highest of Smith's career at USF. She was 10-23 from the field and went 3-for-4 behind the arc and was perfect from the free throw line (4-4).
The Red Storm (18-7, 7-5 BIG EAST) jumped out the gate early, going on a 5-1 run the first two minutes of the game, however USF's Andrea Smith scored two quick baskets, making the score 7-5 with 17:06 left in the first half.
USF would keep within three points for the next five-plus minutes until Andrea Smith gave the Bulls what would be their final lead of the game, 16-14 on the three-pointer with 12:42 left.
St. John's would use a 12-0 run from the 11:50 mark of the first half, which was capped by a Eugeneia McPherson lay-up with 7:59 left in the half giving the Red Storm a 10-point, 26-16 lead.
Leondra Doomes-Stephens would get the Bulls back into the scoring column with back-to-back three's cutting the lead to seven points, 28-21, on the second of the two treys with 7:18 left.
St. John's would push its first half lead to as many as 13 points, 39-26, with 2:31 left before the break.
USF would score the final four points of the half cutting the Red Storm lead to nine, 39-30, heading into the locker room at the intermission.
Coming out of the locker room, the Bulls scored two quick baskets, the first a lay-up by fifth-year senior Porche Grant and then a jumper by Andrell Smith, putting USF only five points behind the Red Storm, 39-34.
St. John's, however, started pulling away at the 12:51 mark when McPherson made the three-point conversion after being fouled on a layup, making the score 58-41.
The Bulls would not get closer the rest of the way.
St. John's shot 48.3 percent (28-58) from the field on the night and 56 percent (14-25) from the field during the second half and limited the Bulls to only 35.4 percent (23-65) shooting in the loss.
USF will be back in action this Saturday at 2 p.m. when they play host to Louisville at the Sun Dome for the second straight home game since December.