Ospreys swoop up a win after six-game losing streak

Ronnie Rodgers

Copy of IMG_3793
Photo by Joslyn Simmons

North Florida was able to swoop up the win over Thomas University with a score of 110-80, and a trio of Ospreys had double-doubles for the night.

Dallas Moore, Romelo Banks and freshmen duo Garrett Sams and Wajid Aminu had double-digit scoring for the game.

Men’s basketball head coach Matthew Driscoll spoke on the pushing his players each game.

“I’m so all in. I want every single possession, every single play. I want the guys to grow. I want to pour into them as much as we can,” said Driscoll.

The first half was tight as the two squads fought for the win. After a timeout midway during the first half, Aminu scored five straight points, bringing the score to 20-15 in the Ospreys advantage.

Aminu would go on to have a double-double by the end of the night with a career-high 24 points and a career-high 11 rebounds.

By halftime, Banks, a redshirt junior, had also earned himself a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds. Late in the first half, Banks came down on the ankle that he had surgery on awkwardly and did not return for the rest of the game.

Banks “tweaked it” according to Driscoll and was checked by doctors. They decided to sit him out for precautionary reasons.

By halftime, the Nighthawks were able to hold Moore, UNF’s star guard, to a mere five points.

Javoris Cook of Thomas had 27 points in the first quarter, and was pretty much scoring every time he touched the ball.

“I told Dallas you’ve gotta shoot more threes. Because what you’re doing isn’t helping us,”said Driscoll. “[Dallas] said at halftime, ‘I’m guarding number two [Cook].’ and number two ends up with only six points in the second half.”

Driscoll and Sams speak during the game. Photo by Joslyn Simmons
Driscoll and Sams speak during the game. Photo by Joslyn Simmons

Out of the break, Moore showed everyone that he is truly a star — he looked like a completely different player. The senior was sinking almost every shot, and scored a total of 25 in the second half. He ended the night with 30 points and 11 assists, garnering a double-double by the end of regulation.

“Dallas is able to affect the game in so many ways, as a scorer, a passer and facilitator,” said Aminu.

During the second half, North Florida lived up to its nickname “The Birds of Trey,” sinking seven straight threes. Sams made all four of his threes during this stretch along with three from Moore.

“It was good to finally see shoots going in,” Sams said.

Sams netted a career-high 23 points and grabbed six rebounds.

“He [Sams] doesn’t realize how good he can be,” said Driscoll. “He’s gonna be one of the best players that ever play at this university, if he does the work.”

Once the clock hit zero, the scoreboard read 110-80. With this win, UNF stopped the bleeding and broke its six game losing streak.

Senior forward Chris Davenport warmed up with the team, and was dressed in his uniform, but did not see any minutes on the court. Davenport could be seen on the sidelines cheering his teammates on and giving advice to some of the younger guys.

Davenport was suspended indefinitely earlier this season, and missed the last four games.

Driscoll said that Davenport is eligible to play and has been reinstated, but “it will be a coaches decision every game,” if he plays.

Next the Ospreys will face the Huskies at Connecticut on Dec. 18 with tip-off at 1 p.m.

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