Memorable Night for Spartans, Coach Jessee

Memorable Night for Spartans, Coach Jessee

TAMPA, Fla. - The University of Tampa women's basketball team secured head coach Tom Jessee's 500th career victory on Wednesday night as the Spartans toppled the Rollins Tars, 55-44. Additionally, Staja Tyghter eclipsed the 1,000 point mark in her collegiate career. 

INSIDE THE MATCHUP
Final Score: Tampa 55, Rollins 44
Records: University of Tampa Spartans (10-4, 4-2 SSC), Rollins College Tars (8-5, 5-2 SSC)
Location: Martinez Athletics Center || Tampa, Fla.
All-Time Series: Tampa trails 55-46, but the Spartans have won back-to-back meetings. 

HOW IT HAPPENED:
1st Quarter | The Spartans used their height advantage in the low-post to begin the game, as Dori Nagy went 4-of-5 from the field totaling eight points in the first ten minutes. Tampa out-scored Rollins in second chance points by a 7-0 margin, in large part to out-rebounding the Tars 12-5. UT's defense held Rollins to 28% shooting from the field in the opening quarter. The Tars' leading scorer, Carly McLendon, tallied four points on three shots. Tampa exited the first quarter with a 16-8 lead. 

2nd Quarter | Rollins implemented a full-court press which caused the Spartans to turn the ball over six times in the opening half. Julia Ingram splashed a long-range jumper in each quarter to finish the half with six points. Each UT starter grabbed at least two rebounds in the first half. Staja Tyghter led the team with four rebounds, while she also filled the stat sheet with five points, two assists, and two steals. Tampa limited the Tars to 17% shooting from long-range in the first 20 minutes, while UT drained four three-pointers on 11 attempts. The Spartans entered the halftime break leading 26-19.

3rd Quarter | Tyghter led the Spartans out of the break, registering six points while she grabbed four rebounds. The Spartans racked up 13 rebounds in the quarter, which aided the eight points in the paint. UT shot 58% from the field in the third quarter, while the defense held Rollins to 28% on 14 shots. Heading into the final quarter, Tampa led 41-30 over the Tars. 

4th Quarter | Lauren Kotey started for the fourth time this season, and the senior logged a career-high six blocks to go along with six rebounds. Nagy finished the night with 14 points and seven rebounds. The Tars put up 19 shots in the fourth quarter, however only converted on six shots as UT's defense held Rollins to 31% shooting on the evening. Coming down the stretch, Emily Eshoo went a perfect 6-for-6 at the free-throw line. 

INSIDE THE STATS:

  • Tyghter scored her 1,000th collegiate point on Wednesday evening. The senior has logged 557 points as a Spartan, and 445 points at Georgia State University. 
  • Tampa's defense is ranked fourth in the nation, allowing about 51 points per game. 
  • The Spartans did not score from the field in the final six minutes of the game.

BEYOND THE BOX:

  • Head coach Tom Jessee took home his 500th career victory this evening. 
  • Tyghter posted a double-double for her second consecutive game. She has scored in double-figures in 13 straight games, while she's grabbed at least seven rebounds in 11 games this season.
  • Eshoo has drained a three-pointer in 11 of 14 games this season. 

UP NEXT: The University of Tampa will travel to Fort Lauderdale on Saturday to face off against Nova Southeastern, tip-off is scheduled for 2pm at the Rick Case Arena.

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