FORT MYERS, FLA.- The #12 Florida SouthWestern State Bucs opened the 2018 Florida Juco Shootout with a dominating win on Saturday night in Suncoast Credit Union Arena, putting up 100 points in Central Florida in a 100-75 win to improve to 7-2 on the year.
Things got off to a good start for FSW who saw Za'Nautica Downs hit a three from the top on their first possession of the game to give them an early 3-0 lead. The teams played even over the next six minutes until an 8-2 run by the Bucs closed the quarter out and gave them a 20-12 lead after one.
A push by the Patriots cut the FSW lead to just two at 26-24 with under seven minutes to go in the second quarter, but seven straight points from Cherelle Washington boosted the Bucs lead up to its biggest of the night at 40-30 at the three-minute mark. The action was up and down to close the half as the two teams combined for 13 points before going to the break with the Bucs leading the Patriots 47-36.
The Bucs pushed their lead to 13 midway through the third on a putback from Simone Lett, but the pesky Patriots continued to hang around, trimming the FSW lead all the way back to three with just over three minutes remaining in the period. A timeout slowed Central Florida's momentum and the Bucs closed out the quarter strong to hold a 72-62 lead after three.
Central Florida remained within striking distance with just over five minutes to go in the game when FSW decided they had had enough of that. Started by a bucket from Tonysha Curry, the Bucs scored 20 points over the final 4:36, putting the cherry on top of a 100 point effort with a three from Kiara Felder in the closing seconds to give them a 100-75 win over the Patriots.
FSW got up 86 field goal attempts in the up and down contest. The Bucs finished the game shooting 42% from the field and 37% from the three point line where they outscored Central Florida 33-12. After being outrebounded in the first half, the Bucs controlled the boards in the second half to finish the game +10 on the glass. FSW got a huge effort out of their bench who outscored the Patriots reserves 62-36 on the night.
Four Bucs scored in double figures in the win including Downs who finished with a game high 21, Felder and Washington who had 15 a piece, and Tina Stephens who scored 14.
FSW improves to 7-2 on the year with the win while Central Florida drops to 3-7.
The Bucs will look to continue their winning ways on Sunday when they host Miami Dade at 5 PM in the final game of the 2018 Florida Juco Shootout at Suncoast Credit Union Arena.
FOLLOW THE BUCS
For the latest news on FSW Athletics, log on to FSWBucs.com or stay connected to the Bucs on social media. Follow the Buccaneers on Twitter @FSWBucs, on Instagram @FSWBucs, on Facebook at Facebook.com/FSWBucs and on Snapchat at BucsSnaps.
WATCH THE BUCS ONLINE
All of FSW's home games will be available online through FSW Livestream (FSW.edu/livestream), and can be viewed on smartphones, tablets and laptop or desktop computers.
SUNCOAST CREDIT UNION ARENA
The Buccaneers compete in the brand new Suncoast Credit Union Arena. Suncoast Credit Union Arena is approximately 75,000 square feet and is home to the FSW basketball teams and a student athletic center. The arena seats approximately 3,300 fans and includes six skyboxes, a hospitality event center, competition courts that convert into recreational courts, athletic office space, student, faculty and staff wellness, and an athletic center with a fitness pavilion, men's and women's locker rooms and a weight training area. The arena has two Daktronics displays, on the north and south walls, that each measure 10 feet high by 20 feet wide. Both displays incorporate variable content zoning to each show one large image or they can be divided into multiple windows to show any variety of live video, instant replays, up-to-the-minute statistics, graphics and animations, and sponsorship messages. One-hundred feet of ribbon displays have been installed on the east and west walls of the arena. The ribbons provide the opportunity to supplement the content on the main displays as well as highlight sponsors throughout events.