Florida Southern sparked by 3s
RUSSELLVILLE, Ark. – Florida Southern seized the momentum early in the second half on Friday afternoon and never let go in an 87-74 victory against the Ouachita Baptist Lady Tigers in the first round of the 2011 NCAA Division II Tournament South Regional held at Tucker Coliseum.
With the win, No. 3 seed Florida Southern, who is ranked 21st in this week's USA Today ESPN Division II Coaches Poll, advances to the NCAA Division II Tournament South Regional semifinals at 8:30 p.m. on Saturday. The Moccasins will face either Delta State or North Alabama.
Florida Southern (26-4) led 43-37 at halftime, and Chelsea Johnson quickly expanded that advantage by scoring the first seven points of the second half.
Johnson's 2-for-2 trip to the free-throw line with 18:05 remaining gave the Moccasins a 50-37 lead.
Florida Southern outscored sixth-seeded Ouachita Baptist 17-4 against the first 4:34 of the second half to built a 60-41 margin with 15:26 to go.
The Lady Tigers missed 10 of their first 11 field-goal tries to start the second half. They never cut the Moccasins' lead under 10 points following Florida Southern's 17-4 run to start the final period.
Ouachita Baptist, who ended its season with a 20-9 record, shot 34 percent (25-of-74) from the field on Friday. Florida Southern was 28-of-63 (44 percent) from the field, including 13-of-33 (39 percent) from 3-point range.
Johnson finished with 22 points to lead the Moccasins. Tanja Speaker was next with 18 points, Michaela Hawley netted 14 points, Emma Cannon contributed 12 points and Megan Dzikas chipped in 10 points as all five Florida Southern starters reached double figures in scoring.
Cannon and Hawley grabbed 14 rebounds apiece.
Gabby Coleman led Ouachita Baptist with 23 points. Beulah Osueke had 19 points and 11 rebounds for the Lady Tigers, while A'Laeshia Adams added 15 points.