Women’s basketball falls against rival JU

Joslyn Simmons

[embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7IQNXvcoExI[/embedyt]

Video by Joslyn Simmons

In part one of the River City Rumble, the women’s basketball team (7-9 overall, 0-1 ASUN) fell 66-48 against the crosstown rival Jacksonville University Dolphins (11-5 overall, 1-0 ASUN).

The Ospreys came out in the game fast with four quick points by freshman Tiffany Tolbert. The home team continued to add points on to the lead, and got a 15-8 advantage when they forced four turnovers from the Dolphins.

Head Coach Darrick Gibbs was pleased with the opening performance of his squad, who held the most physical team in the conference to only eight points in the opening quarter, but saw how the team let go of the steam.

“I felt we got off to the start we wanted to get off to,” Gibbs said. “The game is about runs. You know, it ebbs and flows. Good teams are going to respond when they get punched, and they responded in the second half.”

The momentum wouldn’t remain for UNF as the game clock reset for the second quarter. Jacksonville jumped out with a run of their own, which made North Florida fall back on their heels.

Early in the second quarter, the Ospreys were forced to call timeout and regroup the team. While North Florida managed to create some opportunities, Jacksonville did not let up their strong defensive presence, which lead to points on the other end of the floor.

At the break, JU held a slim 26-24 lead over UNF. As in any rivalry, the two teams battled in the opening minutes of the second half to keep the score close to one another.

Keonna Farmer touched on how the Dolphins’ defense changed the game plan for the Ospreys during the game.

“I think they played very physical,” Farmer said. “They took away some of my, a lot of my go to’s.” Farmer said.

In the fourth quarter, Jacksonville began to widen the gap from North Florida by creating turnovers and limiting the possession for the home team by snatching away rebounds.

“They were the more aggressive team in every shape, form, and fashion in the fourth quarter, and that is the difference in the game,” Gibbs said.

Tiffany Tolbert didn’t see the defense as something North Florida wasn’t able to do well against other teams.

“They boxed us out real well, and we just got to fight,” Tolbert said. “It’s not like they were stronger than us, It’s just we didn’t put the effort in.”

North Florida shot 40 percent from the field compared to 45 percent from Jacksonville. The Dolphins went to the line 14 more times than the Ospreys, adding 17 free points to five.

Jacksonville held the turnover edge with only 14 while forcing 19 from North Florida.

The Dolphins had three players in double figures, led by forward Kayla Gordon with 16. For the Ospreys, Farmer had a game-high 15 points while Tolbert finished with 13.

The women’s basketball team continues their time at the UNF Arena, and will face Kennesaw State on Jan.13.


Photos by Joslyn Simmons and Lili Weinstein