FSU Women’s Basketball Vanquishes FGCU, Advances to Sweet 16


The FSU Women’s Basketball team showed exactly why they were given a #2 seed in Monday night’s matchup with #7 seed FGCU. They dominated in just about every aspect of the game and ran away with it while there was still plenty of time left on the clock, winning by a final score of

Do not take the domination that occurred in the Donald L. Tucker Center as a sign that FGCU was not a good team or overseeded. They were quite possibly the 2nd best women’s basketball team in the state of Florida this season with a final record of 32-2. Entering the matchup with the ‘Noles, they were on a 26-game winning streak and had not lost since November. However, FSU made them look like they did not belong on the same court, jumping out to an early 17-2 lead just over 4 minutes into the game and the Eagles never got closer than 6 points after that.

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Florida State had a large size advantage over FGCU and it showed, as the ‘Noles doubled up the Eagles in rebounds, 46-23. Of those 46 rebounds for FSU, 11 of them were offensive rebounds which led to 14 second chance points. The Seminoles also had 28 points in the paint, also showing their domination in the paint. The domination also showed up in the defensive paint. Even though Florida State only had 2 blocks, they used their length to affect shots from all over the floor and held FGCU to just 30.9% shooting. FGCU, a team that lives and dies by the 3, averaging over 25 3-point attempts per game on the season, did not have their 3 pointer working in the loss. They shot just 28.0% from 3, only 7-25. Meanwhile, FSU shot 46.3% for the game, taking advantage of their size to hit many shots in the paint.

In the win, Shakayla Thomas showed off her athleticism and scoring ability, scoring 12 points on 6-8 shooting off of the bench. Junior center Adut Bulgak was just 1 point short of a double-double. She had 9 points and 13 rebounds, her highest rebound total since February 12th against UNC. Leticia Romero also had another great game at point guard, showing off her triple threat skills with 11 points, 7 rebounds, and 6 assists. Just like the first round win over Alabama State, 10 of 12 Seminoles who saw the court got on to the scoreboard and only Romero and Thomas scored in double digits.

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Although it was a great all-around performance by the ‘Noles, there are definitely places where improvements can be made and may need to be made should they expect to survive next weekend in Greensboro and advance to the Final Four. The Seminoles need to take better care of the ball and avoid careless passes as Florida State committed 17 turnovers. Similarly, FSU could also do better to force turnovers and bad passes on defense as they forced just 11 turnovers and had only 4 steals. The team can also distribute the ball better, needing to improve on the 12 assists that they had in the win over FGCU going forward.

Regardless of the mistakes, Florida State is hot at the right time after a pair of no-doubt wins in Tallahassee in the first 2 rounds of the NCAA Tournament. The Seminoles have advanced to their first Sweet 16 since 2010 and await the winner of the game between the #3 seed Arizona State Sun Devils and the 11th-seeded Arkansas-Little Rock Trojans. The South Region of the Sweet 16 gets underway on Friday in Greensboro, North Carolina.