Bond drops 30 as Lady Ospreys take game one of River City Rumble

Riley Platt, General Assignment Reporter

Featured Image: Justin Nedrow

A week removed from the River City Rumble men’s basketball matchup, the rivalry was renewed on the women’s side. It was a game of runs, which proved especially crucial for UNF as they picked up a big win over their in-city rival.

The JU Dolphins made the short trip to UNF Arena on Saturday for the first of two games against the Ospreys this weekend. This was the first time that the Ospreys had played since Jan. 3, due to the postponement of last week’s series against Kennesaw State. However, this break didn’t seem to bother the team too much, as they put together a strong performance as the Ospreys prevailed 72-65.

UNF got the win over rival JU in the UNF Arena on Saturday, Jan. 16. (Justin Nedrow)

While UNF may have had a long break between games, it was an even longer layoff for JU. Before Saturday, the Dolphins hadn’t played since December 14. With this taken into account, JU played well and impressed the crowd at UNF Arena.

The game began with a strong start by the Ospreys, with forward Jazz Bond scoring their first eight points. Despite this, it was apparent that they’d be in a dogfight until the end. At the end of the first quarter, the Ospreys led 16-13. 

At the beginning of the second quarter, JU began implementing situational full-court pressure, which opened up gaps for the Ospreys to capitalize on. However, things would take a turn once the Dolphins seized the lead. JU would go on a tear to end the first half, taking a 35-30 lead into the break.

Consistent with trends of the game, the second half would start with another run, this time for the Ospreys. Freshman guard Nubia Benedith stepped up, scoring the first nine points for her team in the second half. UNF head coach Darrick Gibbs highlighted the importance of this sequence in the postgame press conference.

“She pretty much came out in the second half and did exactly what we asked her to do,” Gibbs said. “Any time you can get contributions from some of our young kids, we’re excited about that.”

With the help of Benedith’s run, the Ospreys were able to tie things back up. A fast-break bucket from guard Marissa Mackins gave UNF the lead, which they wouldn’t surrender for the rest of the game.

Late in the fourth quarter, JU cut the deficit to just one score, but the Ospreys didn’t let this phase them. Plays from the likes of forward Jazz Bond helped reinforce the lead. Bond had a career day, racking up 30 points and 15 rebounds. After the game, Bond highlighted the significance of this performance.

Jazz Bond (Pictured) helped the Ospreys to a win over JU scoring 30 points and also grabbing 15 rebounds (Justin Nedrow)

“Going into this game was very personal because we haven’t beat JU on our home court in quite a long time,” Bond said. “I just went into this game not wanting to lose, especially on our home court.”

Saturday’s win was very promising, but the Ospreys will be back at it again on Sunday afternoon. With a shorter schedule, each game is critical, and any opportunity to pick up a win is huge. Follow along with Spinnaker for leading coverage on UNF basketball.


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