The Florida Tech women’s basketball team rebounded well literally and figuratively from Saturday’s loss to Saint Leo with a 78-65 win at Barry on Sunday. The Panthers were an impressive 15-for-38 (39.5 percent) from three-point land and 27-of-63 (42.9 percent) from the field overall.
“This was a good team win for us,” said Panthers coach John Reynolds. “Before yesterday’s game we went 21 days between games and we weren’t able to practice. We had to get our basketball legs back and I think we did that.”
Fanny Paulin led the charge for the Panthers with a 23-point performance, going 8-of-14 from the field with seven of her 11 three-pointers falling. Lina Stranger-Johannessen was not far behind with 19 points including five of her six field goals coming from outside. Aiste Vaitekunaite went for 11 points, rounding out the double-digit scorers.
“Lina had a good game for us,” Reynolds said. “She also did some things defensively that won’t show up.”
“We moved the ball well and had some kids that were able to knock down shots today,” said Reynolds. “We had some good individual performances to go with a very good team effort.”
After being outrebounded 45-28 in Saturday’s loss, won the boards on Sunday, 48-43. Irene Vicente paced the Panthers in that category with nine. Fanny Hakanson finished with five points and dished out 10 of the Panthers’ 16 assists.
Fanny Hakanson was big for us today,” said Reynolds. “She found an open teammate and they finished the shot. There are some games when her assist numbers are just as good but the guy doesn’t make the shot.”
“Irene and Aiste both played to their potential today,” Reynolds continued. “I was glad to see the way everyone came together.”
Harriett Swindells was Barry’s top point-getter with 18 and Chiara Fusari finished with 16.
The Panthers (3-3) led 22-16 in a tightly contested first quarter. Barry made one of their last 10 shots in the quarter. The Panthers were 2-for-5 from three, with one each from Paulin and Stranger-Johannessen.
Two consecutive makes from Vaitekunaite to start the second quarter got the Florida Tech lead to 10. An 11-2 run from the Bucs closed the gap to 28-27. Zoe Murphy then hit a three, but the Panthers were in a 1-for-9 funk and Barry tied it at 32 before another three by Stranger-Johannessen made it 35-32. Two three-pointers from Paulin late in the half gave the Panthers six in the half and they took a 41-35 lead into the intermission.
Florida Tech picked up right where they left off as they started the second half with back-to-back threes from Paulin and Murphy. Paulin would hit another as part of a 13-0 run to push the lead to 54-35.
The visitors had a couple of scoreless spurts but Hakanson and Stranger-Johannessen hit a few threes between the two of them to keep Barry from making a big run at any point in the quarter. Florida Tech would hold a 63-50 lead as the fourth quarter commenced.
Another three for Stranger-Johannessen started the fourth quarter and the Panthers went up 71-55. Barry answered with an 8-0 run, closing the gap to 71-63. That was as close as the home team would get thanks to three-pointers from Paulin and Stranger-Johannessen, helping the Panthers finish the game on a 7-2 run.
For more info: Florida Tech @ Barry Box Score
Florida Tech is scheduled to hit the road on Wednesday, March 10, traveling to Rollins. Game time is set for 6:00 p.m.