Second Half Scoring Drought Dooms Eagles in 67-46 Loss at USF
|Florida Gulf Coast||27||19||46|
|Stats at a Glance||FGCU||USF|
|FG Percentage||.260 (13-50)||.390 (23-59)|
|3P FG Percentage||.258 (8-31)||.500 (6-12)|
|FT Percentage||.800 (12-15)||.652 (15-23)|
KENNEDY - 10
TAMPA, Fla. – Senior Joyce Iamstrong (Chicago, Ill./Thornton Fractional South HS/Jefferson College) scored a team-high 10 points to lead the FGCU women’s basketball team, but a long second half scoring drought caused the Eagles to fall at in-state foe USF, 67-46, on Wednesday night at The Sun Dome.
With the loss, FGCU falls to 4-4 overall, while the Bulls improve to 7-0 on the season.
The Eagles, who are t-19th in the nation in three-point field goals per game (7.7) this season, knocked down eight shots from behind the arc, led by a trio of triples from while redshirt senior Lerrin Cook (Kearny, Ariz./Ray HS/Yavapai College)
Iamstrong finished with 10 points, seven rebounds, and five assists in 26 minutes, before fouling out of the game with 9:22 left in regulation. Senior Brittany Kennedy (Spokane, Wash./Lewis and Clark HS/Oregon State) turned in a solid performance with 10 points, six assists, four rebounds and a pair of steals. Redshirt junior Sarah Hansen (Edinboro, Pa./General McLane HS), who passed her former teammate Courtney Chihil and moved into fifth place all-time in program history for career points (1,021), nearly recorded her fourth double-double of the season with 11 rebounds and nine points. Freshman Jaime Gluesing (Solon, Ohio/Solon HS), in her first collegiate start, added eight points and four rebounds, while Cook chipped in with nine points and four rebounds.
USF opened the game with a quick 6-2 run over the first 3:33 of the opening period. The Eagles responded with a 12-2 spurt, highlighted by eight points from Iamstrong, to take a 14-8 lead with 13:03 on the clock.
After the teams battled to a 21-21 tie (5:21), Gluesing drilled a three-pointer to give the Green and Blue a 24-21 advantage with just over four minutes to go in the half. USF responded in a big way and went on to outscore the Eagles 12-3 over the final 4:14 to take a 33-27 lead into the locker room at the intermission.
Iamstrong led FGCU with eight points, four rebounds and three assists in the first half. Hansen added six points, seven boards and a pair of blocks, while Cook chipped in with six points and three rebounds in just nine minutes.
The Eagles shot just 8-of-24 (33.3 percent) from the field and knocked in 5-of-17 (29.4 percent) from behind the arc, while USF hit 43.8 percent (14-of-32) of their shots from the floor. FGCU, with 15 first half turnovers, outrebounded the Bulls 24-15 and held USF without an offensive rebound in the first 20 minutes.
In the second half the Eagles cut the USF lead down to one-point (33-32) at the 18 minute mark after Kennedy made a pair from the charity stripe, but the Bulls would be in control the rest of the way. Hansen buried a three-pointer from the left wing to cut the USF lead down to 48-44 and the Bulls went on to hold the Green and Blue without a field goal over the final 8:23 and picked up the 67-46 non-conference win. FGCU managed just two points, a pair of free-throws from Gluesing (2:49), in the final 8:23 of the game.
USF shot 39.0 percent (23-for-59) from the floor and hit six of its 12 attempts from behind the three-point line.
FGCU shot just 26.0 percent (13-for-50) from the floor and hit 8-of-31 three-pointers. The Eagles also registered eight blocks, committed 19 turnovers (USF scored 16 points off of those turnovers) and tallied 11 assists on 13 made baskets.
The Eagles will now have a break for final exams before traveling to Virginia for a pair of non-conference contests. FGCU will take on Virginia Tech (4-3) on Dec. 16 (2 p.m.), before battling the Spiders of Richmond (6-4) on Dec. 19 (7 p.m.).
Fans can follow FGCU on Twitter (@FGCU_WBB) and Instagram (@FGCUWbb) and on Facebook by liking FGCU Women’s Basketball (www.Facebook.com/FGCUWbb).
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