Over spring break, the Rollins Women’s Basketball Team lost to the University of West Florida in the South Region Championship game in St. Petersburg, Florida, on March 13, effectively ending their season.
The loss came close after the Tar’s shocking upset of Eckerd (55-43); the Rollins team was five seed, and Eckerd was the top seed.
Though Rollins led early in the game, UWF took a 16-15 lead to end the first quarter. Though the Tars briefly regained the lead, a poor second quarter with only six points scored (their worst of the season) led to UWF’s eight point lead entering halftime.
The story was much the same after the half: Rollins was losing by 14 points when the third quarter ended. With only five minutes remaining in the game, the Tars managed to close in on UWF, bringing the score to only a five point difference (53-48). Though Rollins’ Marie Gilbert scored two three-point shots, it was not enough to defeat UWF, and the final score was 72-62.
Rollins players Julia Ingler and Gilbert were both given spots on the NCAA South Region All-Tournament Team. The top scorer of the day was Shami Goodman with 20 points for West Florida.
Overall, the Tars trailed UWF in rebounds and assists, but the team lead in free throw percentages. Rollins’ top scorer of the day was Gilbert with 19 points, and Ingler followed closely with 15 points.
This was the last game for the team’s seniors, Tanaya Jones, Marie Gilbert, and Brittany Betts. According to Rollins Sports’ website, the ladies will end their season with a record of 22-8.
The Rollins men had a more successful run in the South Region Tournament in Huntsville, Alabama, and they have advanced to the NCAA Division II Elite Eight for the second time in school history, the first being in 2004 against Metro State where the Tars fell 54-88.
On March 11, the Rollins men won their game against Valdosta State to advance in the tournament. The game went into overtime, but the Tars eked out a 89-85 win. The following day, on March 12, they played Delta State in the semifinal and won by 27 points; the final score was 88-61. They played University of Alabama-Huntsville to take home the Region Championship on March 14 and played a close game, ultimately pulling out a victory of 72-68.
The men played again on March 22 against Fairmont State in the Quarterfinal of the NCAA Division II Elite Eight. The remaining games in the tournament will either be streaming live or aired on television, check Rollins Sports’ website to see viewing options.