On Saturday, Florida Tech (2-11, 0-8 SSC) suffered a 65-38 loss to the Tampa Spartans at the Clemente Center. The Panthers are still dealing with some players being in protocol but had a decent chunk of their lineup playing after eight players were out at one point. That wasn’t enough to overcome the 21st-ranked Spartans.
Panthers coach John Reynolds gave Tampa some well-deserved credit after the game. “They are a good, balanced team,” he said. “When you play a team that is that good, you have to raise your effort.”
The Panthers got out to an early lead in this one, going up 11-6, helped by a couple of buckets from Aiste Vaitekunaite and Hannah Roney chipped in as she was returning to the lineup. Tampa then hit three straight threes to go up 15-11. They would end the quarter on a 14-2 run and lead 20-13 at the end of the quarter.
Tampa (15-3, 6-1 SSC) would score the first four points of the second quarter before Roney drained a three to close the gap to 24-16. Unfortunately, Florida Tech would see the Spartans reel off 11 straight points and go on to outscore the home team 20-7 in the quarter and lead 40-20 at the half.
Florida Tech’s Makyla Daniels scored four points to start the third quarter but it ended up being another seven-point quarter for the Panthers but the Spartans ended the quarter on a 13-3 run, leading 55-27 heading into the final 10 minutes.
In that fourth quarter, the Panthers outscored Tampa 11-10, helped by threes from Severine Uggen and Lina Stranger-Johannessen. Florida Tech freshman Anthi Savvidou hit a three just before the final buzzer to make it a 65-38 game.
For more info: Tampa @ Florida Tech Box Score
Florida Tech made eight out of 29 shots from the field in the first half, shooting 28 percent. They followed that up with a 7-for-24 performance in the second half, good for 29 percent. They shot 28.3 percent overall, including 5-for-23 from three-point range. They went 3-for-5 from the free-throw line.
“Sometimes when you look bad it’s because the other team won’t let you look good,” said Reynolds. “Tampa did that today. I think this is the first time this year that we didn’t have one guy in double figures.”
Vaitekunaite and Roney led the Panthers with six points each. “Hannah being out 13 days played hard and played well,” Reynolds said. He also gave credit to Fanny Paulin, who had five points and eight rebounds on Saturday.
“Fanny is playing like a senior,” he said. “She had seven rebounds Wednesday and eight today. When one part of your game isn’t working you help out in another way, and she did that.”
The Panthers are on the road on Wednesday, January 12 at Miami Shores against Barry. The game will get underway at 5:30 p.m.