DALLAS (SMU) - Senior Alisha Filmore made six free throws in the final 1:09 to finish with 16 points and lead SMU to a 67-63 win over North Texas Thursday night in Moody Coliseum. The Mustangs scored 18 points in the last 5:09 to outlast North Texas and improve to 3-0 on the season, while the Mean Green fell to 0-2.
In a game that was body blow after body blow and included 43 fouls, the Mustangs delivered the final blow down the stretch, taking a six-point lead, 61-55 with 1:33 left in the game, after Korina Baker hit a fast break layup to cap off a 5-0 SMU run in just under a minute.
After Gabrielle Wilkins hit a free throw with 2:27 left to give SMU a two-point lead, Baker came down with a rebound amidst a crowd of North Texas players after Alexis Hyder missed a contested jumper. The transfer guard found a sprinting Filmore for the fast break layup. On the next possession, Akil Simpson stole a pass and hit Baker for the layup to put SMU up six with a minute and a half to play.
The Mustangs shot 54.2 percent from the field in the second half, and went 13 of 21 from the free throw line, out-scoring North Texas 39-34 in the final 20 minutes to take the win in their third game in six days. Filmore scored 12 of her 16 points in the second half, and Wilkins, playing in her first game as a freshman, scored eight points in the final 20 minutes and finished with 11.
North Texas threw the first punch, scoring the first seven points of the game. After BreAnna Dawkins put the Mean Green up 9-2 just over three minutes into the game, the Mustangs shook off the blow, went on a 12-0 run, took their first lead 10-9 with 12:28 seconds left in the first half, and the fight was on. Mallory Singleton scored the bucket to give SMU the lead after Gabrielle Wilkins scored a driving layup and made the free throw, converting the and-one situation to pull the Mustangs to within one, 9-8 with 13:15 on the clock.
The Mustangs held North Texas scoreless from the field for nearly eight minutes, from just under the 17 minute mark to just under the nine minute mark, before Christian Hannah knocked down a three to pull the Mean Green to within two points of the Mustangs, who led 16-14 with 8:55 left in the half. The defensive effort by both teams kept the score close, and despite scoring 10 points on nine North Texas turnovers while the Mean Green only got five points on six SMU turnovers, the Mustangs trailed 29-28 at halftime.
Farrin Bell scored 12 points on a team-high five field goals to give SMU three players in double figures, and Akil Simpson grabbed a team-high eight rebounds. SMU had 12 steals on 22 North Texas turnovers, converting for 20 points.
SMU is back in action against Arkansas-Little Rock in Moody Coliseum on Monday at 7 p.m. For ticket information, visit SMUMustangs.com/tickets or call 214-SMU-GAME.