'Turn Up': @FGCU_WBB Uses Strong Second Half to Defeat UNF & Extend Winning Streak
|Florida Gulf Coast||31||35||66|
|Stats at a Glance||FGCU||UNF|
|FG Percentage||.500 (21-42)||.370 (17-46)|
|3P FG Percentage||.400 (10-25)||.235 (4-17)|
|FT Percentage||.933 (14-15)||.632 (12-19)|
CONNER - 13
ADAMS - 5
CHATZIGIAKOUMI - 1
GLUESING - 1
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Four players scored in double figures as the FGCU women’s basketball team knocked down 10 three-pointers to defeat UNF, 66-50, to pick up their 12th consecutive win.
“I thought we played solid defense tonight,” said head coach Karl Smesko. “We were able to force North Florida into 11 turnovers and some tough shots in the second half. UNF is a good defensive team and they were able to get Sarah (Hansen) and Brittany (Kennedy) into foul trouble, but our bench, especially Anthi (Chatzigiakoumi) and Betsy (Adams), stepped up when we needed them most.”
With the win, FGCU, winners of 29 straight A-Sun games, improves to 18-5 overall and 11-0 in the A-Sun, while North Florida falls to 10-12 overall (6-5 A-Sun). FGCU’s 29 consecutive conference victories ranks as the second longest streak in the country behind defending national champion Baylor (32).
The Eagles, who have made at least one three-pointer in 220 consecutive contests and 332 of 333 games in program history, made 10 triples on the night and now have 213 triples as a team. Five different players made at least one trey for the Green and Blue, led by senior Betsy Adams’ (Monticello, Ind./Twin Lakes HS/Valpo) 4-of-6 night.
Senior Joyce Iamstrong (Chicago, Ill./Tornton Fractional South HS/Jefferson College) turned in a game-high 18 points on 5-of-11 shooting from the floor and 7-of-7 from the charity stripe. She also added four rebounds and three assists in 37 minutes. Adams totaled 14 points and five boards. Redshirt junior Sarah Hansen (McKean, Pa./General McLane HS) registered 11 points and five rebounds in a foul plagued 23 minutes, while sophomore Anthi Chatzigiakoumi (Athens, Greece/General Sr. HS of Kallithea) scored 11 points in 11 minutes off the bench.
UNF opened the game with a 6-2 run over the first 2:47 of the period. After Ki Conner banked in a three-pointer to put the Ospreys ahead 14-8 at the 13:19 mark, FGCU used a 13-4 run, capped by a trey from Chatzigiakoumi, to take a 21-18 lead (8:15).
Trailing FGCU 23-20, UNF used a 6-0 run to take a 26-23 advantage with 3:13 left in the half. FGCU responded with an 8-2 spurt over the final three minutes of the period to take a 31-28 lead into the locker room at the intermission. The Green and Blue’s run was capped by a deep triple from Adams at the buzzer.
Hansen led the Green and Blue with nine points and three rebounds in the first half, while Adams added eight points and a pair of boards. FGCU shot 44.0 percent (11-for-25) from the floor, while the Ospreys knocked down 11-of-24 (45.8 percent) attempts from the field. The Eagles, who knocked down five shots from behind the arc in the first half, forced UNF into seven turnovers in the opening 20 minutes.
FGCU opened the second half with a 9-2 run, highlighted by four points from Iamstrong, to take a 40-30 lead with 15:45 left in regulation. The Eagles were dealt a huge blow when their top two scorers, Hansen (14:59) and Kennedy (13:42), picked up their fourth personal fouls within a minute of each other, but were able to extend their lead. Leading 40-34, the Green and Blue used an 11-0 run, capped by an Adams three-pointer, to take a 51-34 advantage (10:34).
UNF employed a 7-0 spurt to cut the FGCU lead down to 51-41, but the Green and Blue outscored the Ospreys 11-7, thanks to eight points from Chatzigiakoumi, to take a 62-48 advantage (3:19). FGCU went on to hold off UNF to pick up the 66-50 conference victory.
The Ospreys, who were limited to 27.3 percent in the second half, finished the night with a 37 percent shooting percentage (17-of-46).
The Eagles shot 50.0 percent (21-for-42) from the floor, 93.3 percent (14-of-15) from the charity stripe and hit 10 three-pointers on 25 attempts (40 percent). FGCU registered 24 rebounds, forced UNF into 18 turnovers (scored 22 points off of those turnovers) and tallied 15 assists on 21 made baskets.
The Green and Blue are back in action on Saturday, February 9, when they host the Spartans of USC Upstate at ‘The Nest’. The game, which is the second contest in a double-header with the men’s team, will be broadcast live on ESPN3.
Fans can follow FGCU on Twitter (@FGCU_WBB), Instagram (@FGCUWbb) and on Facebook by liking FGCU Women’s Basketball (www.Facebook.com/FGCUWbb).
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