LAKELAND, Fla. – A balanced offensive attack helped Florida Southern College women's basketball to a 78-69 win over Flagler on Wednesday night at Streamline Sale Arena at Jenkins Field House. The Moccasins (2-1) topped the Saints (0-1) for the 10th-straight meeting.
Julia Jenike led the Mocs with 15 points as Southern shot a solid 53.7 percent (29-of-54) from the floor and knocked down 7-of-16 three-pointers. The big push for Florida Southern came in the third quarter when it outscored Flagler 21-12.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- 1st Quarter | Both teams came out hot in the first quarter, as each shot better than 42.0 percent from the floor over the first 10 minutes. Flagler jumped out to an early lead, but the Mocs were able to stay within at least one point until the Saints hit a pair of free throws at the 4:10 mark to go up by three (12-9). Jenike would connect from long range on Southern's next possession to tie things at 12-12, and Florida Southern rode the momentum to a 20-19 advantage at the end of the first.
- 2nd Quarter | Flagler used an 8-3 run over the opening two and a half minutes of the second quarter to take a 27-23 lead on Jada Banks' layup at the 7:38 mark to force a Moccasin timeout. The Mocs sliced the deficit back to two almost immediately, but the Saints used four-straight points to turn a 29-27 edge into a 34-27 advantage with 6:09 to go in the half. Monet Burkett nailed a three for the Moccasins with 5:41 to go to make it 34-30, but Flagler responded with a three of its own to go back up by seven (37-30). Southern responded with five quick points, including a three from Elsa Landberg, to pull back within a bucket (37-35). With the scored tied at 41-41 and time winding down in the half, Bekki Kalaydjiev nailed a jumper in the paint and the Moccasins took a 43-41 lead into the half.
- 3rd Quarter | Tied at 43-43 early in the third, Katerina Pazzaglia-Khomenko was able to grab an offensive board and finish strong through contact to hit a layup and the ensuing free throw to give the Mocs a 46-43 lead with 8:15 on the clock. The bucket kicked off a 9-0 run that saw Southern snag a 52-43 advantage on Kaladjiev's layup on the fast break with 6:10 to play in the quarter. Flagler finally put an end to the run when Kierra Crane connected from deep to make it 52-46 with 5:48 on the clock. Kaja Wroblewska's layup with 3:25 remaining in the third put Southern up by 10 (58-48), its first double-digit lead, and the Mocs took a 64-53 advantage into the fourth quarter.
- 4th Quarter | After Aubrey Burke seemed to give Southern an insurmountable lead (66-53) in the opening minute of the fourth quarter, the Mocs went cold from the floor and Flagler took full advantage with a 9-0 run to pull within four (66-62) on Scout Frame's jumper with 6:32 to go. Up by just four (68-64) with a little over five minutes to play, Landberg drilled another shot from deep to push Florida Southern's lead to seven (71-64) and the Mocs would never see their lead dip below that mark the rest of the way.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
- Florida Southern improved to 23-4 all-time against Flagler, including an 11-1 mark when facing the Saints at home. The Mocs have won each of the last 10 meetings against Flagler.
- Kalaydjiev set a new career-high with 13 points, while Wroblewska also scored 13 in just her third collegiate game. Florida Southern dished out 25 assists, marking the second time this season that it has recorded at least 20 assists in a game (22 vs. Alabama-Huntsville).
- The assist total on Wednesday against Flagler is the team's highest since recording 26 in a 91-59 win over Lynn on Jan. 5, 2019. Florida Southern outscored the Saints 30-24 in the paint, and 36-25 in bench points.
- Florida Southern remains at home to take on Bentley at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday. The Mocs open Sunshine State Conference action next week with games at Embry-Riddle (Nov. 20) and Barry (Nov. 23).