Ospreys snatch victory from Panthers

Bruce Hope, Sports Reporter

Khorri Newton

The UNF Women’s Basketball team survived a hard fought back and forth game to defeat the FIU Lady Panthers 62-53 Tuesday night at home.  After a slow start, not scoring until late in the first quarter, the Ospreys made a 10-point run to take control of the game in the second quarter.

Coach Darrick Gibbs talked about the team’s slow start.

“I think it was the turnovers..we didn’t have the ball long enough to get into a rhythm offensively,” Gibbs said.

Junior Janesha Green made the first field goal for the (4-3) Ospreys with 52 seconds remaining in the first quarter as she buried a three pointer. Green carried the team back from the deficit that grew to 14 points by adding seven more points in the second quarter.

“She was going and she was carrying us so we were trying to run stuff to continue to get her looks, continue to get her shots…she really stepped up for us,” Gibbs said.

Shooting 44 percent from the field and 55 percent from the arc in the second quarter, the Ospreys took a 26-25 lead into halftime.

After a poor shooting third quarter, the Ospreys surrendered the lead, and trailed 41-40.  Even when the Ospreys shots weren’t falling, their defensive intensity and attention to limiting turnovers never let the game get out of hand, even if they fell behind.  During the third quarter, the Ospreys did not have a turnover, while forcing two from the Panthers (2-7). The Ospreys also outrebounded the Panthers in the quarter, 11-10, limiting second shot opportunities.

Finally, the seesaw game was put away when Senior Arianna Emanuel-Wright took over down the stretch, scoring 10 points in addition to five more from Green.

Emanuel-Wright snuffed out any hope of the Panthers stealing the win when she took a charge with 45 seconds remaining, 62-53, Ospreys.

Green led the team in points with 15 and tied for the lead in rebounds with eight.   

The Ospreys head an hour south on Saturday, Dec. 15 when they take on Bethune Cookman on the road at 3 p.m.

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