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UNF Spinnaker

UNF WBB loses season-opener to ranked NC State 65-93

John Watson, Sports Editor

It has been 254 days since UNF has competed in Division I competition and UNF WBB kicked off the return of athletics with a contest against the eighth ranked team in the country, NC State. As the final score was not in the Osprey’s favor, it seems as though Coach Gibbs and his inexperienced woman’s squad are still putting the pieces together after facing one of the top teams in the country.

Going up on the road against an NC State team that captured the ACC Tournament trophy last season and had returned four of their five starters, the Ospreys may have faced their toughest test of the season in only the first game. NC State 2019 All-American Elissa Cunane had her sights set on improving on an impressive 2019 campaign, but struggled against the Ospreys and went 4-11 with 12 points.

However, her teammates had her back and her fellow starters tallied 66 of NC State’s 93 points. NC State’s Kai Crutchfield led scoring for the Wolfpack with 21 points and Jada Boyd notched a double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds. 

Statistically dominant, NC State never let off the gas and have much to look forward to as Cunane gains steam as the season continues. For the Ospreys, a mixture of spotty rebounding, a tough game from Jazz Bond and turnovers were all factors in today’s loss.

Jazz Bond (#11) struggled in her 27 minutes of playing time against eighth ranked NC State. (Khorri Newton)

Like Elissa Cunane on the Wolpack’s team, Jazz Bond was set to make an impressive start and somehow, that never happened. Bond shot 1-6 from the three point line and missed her only two-point attempt of the game. While Bond struggled, Junior Guard Marrissa Mackins made an impressive debut with her new team scoring 22 points while going 6-10 from the three-point line.

Mackins’ sharpshooting performance highlighted a tough day for the Ospreys defensively. The Wolfpack had no player commit more than two turnovers while multiple Ospreys had three each and one player even had five. Knowing Coach Gibbs, this will be something highlighted in the next few practices and should improve by Saturday’s contest against Miami.

While only 25 people made up the audience of today’s affair against NC State, the Ospreys must be glad to be back on the hardwood competing as COVID-19 continues to affect the lives of millions.

The Ospreys will now travel to Miami to play the Hurricanes on Saturday at 3 p.m. and then travel to Boca Raton to play the FAU Owls on Sunday at 6 p.m.

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