No. 20 Florida Tech Control Their Own Destiny
By Florida Tech Athletic Communications // February 18, 2015
19-3 heading into Wednesday
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Just one game back with four to go, No. 20 Florida Tech is in contention for its first Sunshine State Conference regular season championship since 2006-07, when it tied with Rollins for the league crown.
The Panthers control their own destiny, meaning they don’t need help from other teams, and can take a step in the right direction with a win over visiting Barry on Wednesday.
After knocking off Florida Southern for the second time, 77-64 on Saturday, Florida Tech received some help as Eckerd upset No. 14 Rollins to put the Panthers back in the driver’s seat in the conference standings.
In the Panthers’ 13-point win over Florida Southern, the Crimson and Gray trailed by six before closing the contest on a 30-11 run in front of the home crowd.
Florida Tech shot a season-best 56 percent in the second half, making 12 of its final 17 attempts, to improve to 19-3 on the year.
Guard Kayk Wilson poured in a game-high 21 points to lead three Panthers in double figures, while freshman Kailyn Ebb chipped in with eight points and nine rebounds in her first career start.
In its first meeting with Barry down in Miami Shores, Florida back on Jan. 14, Florida Tech turned in a complete team effort en route to a commanding 75-58 victory.
The Panthers extended their eight-point halftime advantage to 27 after beginning the second half on a blistering 26-7 spurt and didn’t allow the Bucs within 16 points the rest of the way.
Behind stifling defense, head coach John Reynolds’ club limited Barry to 32.4 percent shooting, including a combined 4-of-23 from the Bucs’ top-two scorers Kaylia Richardson and Jackie Perez.
Since its previous matchup with Florida Tech, Barry has dropped seven of nine to fall below .500 (11-13, 3-9 SSC).
However, Barry did show some life in its devastating 57-55 loss to Nova Southeastern this past Saturday.
The Bucs received 27 huge points from their bench and outrebounded the Sharks, but a lay-up at the buzzer by NSU’s Jessica Valley dashed any hopes of an upset.
FIT will need to keep tabs on sharp-shooter Antonia Neibler this time around.
Leading the conference in three-point field goal percentage at 47.1 percent, Neibler posted a season-high 15 points off the bench despite the loss to the Panthers.
Barry upended FIT 77-62 in last year’s trip to Melbourne, Florida.
Tune into FloridaTechSports.com for complete coverage of Wednesday’s league action.
Jim Mitchell and Paul Van Scott will have the call live from the Clemente Center.