Header pic: Fanny Paulin – Credit: Florida Tech Athletics
Embry-Riddle Eagles got a 72-58 win over Florida Tech on Wednesday night at Daytona. It was the 100th win in the women’s basketball program’s history and improved their record to 8-9 overall and 6-6 in the Sunshine State Conference. Congratulations to coach Lisa Wilson and her players on the accomplishment.
The Panthers had three players in double figures, led by Fanny Paulin who had 21 points snd seven rebounds. She was 6-for-12 from the field, including 3-for-6 from three-point range and 6-for-6 on free throws.
“Paulin has really rebounded well and picked up her game,” said Panthers coach John Reynolds by phone after the game. “She has been big for us.”
Severine Uggen had 11 points, and Lina Stranger-Johannessen finished with 10. ERAU’s Nikki Tucker led the home team with 22 points.
The Panthers got off to a slow start and it cost them. The Panthers’ defense had a tough night, and that didn’t go unnoticed by coach John Reynolds.
“When other teams are playing hard defense we don’t match that intensity.,” said Reynolds. “We missed open shooters many times tonight and didn’t have all five guys getting back on defense.”
Florida Tech (3-16, 1-13 SSC) were down 19-11 at the end of the first quarter. Hannah Roney got a three for the Panthers early, but ERAU went on an 8-0 run and led 12-3 with 3:16 left. Uggen hit three moments later to cut the lead in half.
Uggen would hit another three with 34 seconds left but that was answered by Rachel Murray who drained a three at the buzzer, giving the Eagles the eight-point lead after the opening stanza. Murray finished with 16 points.
After a basket started the second quarter with a bucket and Uggen answered with a three, making it 21-14 with 8:46 left. The lead got back to 10 with 5:43 left and the Eagles led 38-25 at the break.
Florida Tech got threes from Paulin and Stranger-Johannessen to start the third quarter, sparking an 11-2 run by the visitors. Paulin hit another three and Stranger-Johannessen laid one in, cutting the lead to 40-36.
The Eagles answered with another three, going back up by seven. They would lead 51-41 at the end of the third quarter.
Shelby Bischoff got a basket for Embry-Riddle to start the fourth. A 6-0 run by the Panthers got the lead down to 56-51 with 6:23 to go.
“We came out ready to play in the second half,” said Reynolds. We played better defense and got it down to 5, but in the span of two possessions, it went from five to 10.”
Roney’s three with 4:21 to go made it 61-54 but a 7-0 run by the Eagles made it 68-54 with 1:57 left. Bischoff finished the game by hitting two free throws and ended the night with 12 points.
Florida Tech made 20-of-60 shots from the field (33.3 percent). They were 10-for-30 (33.3 percent from long distance and 8-of-9 (88.9 percent) from the free-throw line.
Embry-Riddle went 29-for-64 (45.3 percent) from the floor and 7-for-15 from three (46.7 percent). They finished 7-for-8 (87.5 percent) from the line.
The Eagles won many of the major categories, including a major disparity in points in the paint.
“When you get outscored 40-14 in the paint that’s about toughness,” said Reynolds. “We gotta take a look at what we’re not doing and be committed to playing hard. You don’t get to take a possession off.”
For more info: Florida Tech @ Embry-Riddle Box Score
The Panthers are back home Saturday against Nova Southeastern in the Play-4-Kay Cancer Awareness game.
“They are the most improved team since the season started,” said Reynolds of Nova. “They draw charges and play defense and if we are not on our game, we will be in trouble.”
Saturday’s game tips off at 2:00 p.m.