Lady Panthers Knock Off No. 2 Seed Florida Southern, 58-52 Advance To SSC Tourney Finals
By Daniel Supraner, Florida Tech Sports // March 5, 2017
first 6 seed to PLAY IN SSC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME
DAYTONA BEACH, FLORIDA – Florida Tech (15-13) continues to roll and keep its season alive, this time pulling the upset over No. 2 seed Florida Southern (20-9), 58-52, in the semifinals of the Sunshine State Conference Women’s Basketball Tournament on Saturday.
The Panthers have won five of their last six contests and will now make their second consecutive appearance in the league championship game, taking on No. 1 seed Eckerd.
Florida Tech reached the final game by defeating a pair of opponents who swept the Panthers during the regular season, in No. 3 seed Rollins and Florida Southern.
Gudlaug Juliusdottir led all players with 15 points to go along with three assists.
Julie McCarthy recorded a double-double on 12 points and a game-best 11 rebounds.
DeLise Williams added nine points, three boards and three steals, while Markeema Crawford notched seven points, four rebounds and four steals. Tereza Sedlakova chipped in seven boards and four points.
Florida Tech made 37.5 percent from the field while limiting FSC to 33.9 percent shooting.
The Panthers scored 24 points in the paint and 24 points off 22 FSC turnovers.
The Mocs grabbed more rebounds in the game 39-37.
After a slow start to the contest, the Panthers found themselves trailing 20-12 entering the second quarter. However, FIT outscored the Mocs 15-8 in the second and went into halftime trailing by one, 28-27.
FIT scored the first eight points of the third quarter to take a 35-28 advantage. However, the Mocs came surging back with eight straight points and grabbed a 36-35 edge with 3:29 to go in the third.
The Panthers responded with another 8-0 run to regain the lead and went into the fourth ahead 43-36.
Florida Tech’s lead hit 10, twice, during the final stanza but FSC cut the deficit to three, 50-47, with 4:44 left on the clock.
Crawford’s jumper pushed the lead back to six with 2:16 remaining and the Panthers held on from there, finishing the game at the free throw line with a pair of makes by Sedlakova.
Standing in FIT’s way for a conference championship is an Eckerd squad that ended the season with a record of 23-4 (16-2 SSC) and swept the Panthers in both meetings during the regular season.
Sunday’s contest will be the first ever matchup between the Tritons and Panthers in the SSC Championship.
The game will be featured as part of the NCAA Division II Basketball Showcase and will be streamed live on WatchESPN and the ESPN app.
Tip off is set for 1 p.m. ET at the ICI Center in Daytona Beach.
Fans can access links to the live coverage at FloridaTechSports.com.
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