Lady Chants suffer first loss of season at North Florida

The Coastal Carolina women’s basketball team suffered its first setback of the season with a 67-37 loss at North Florida.

The Chanticleers fall to 4-1 on the young season as North Florida improves to 1-5.

North Florida used its aggressive, swarming defensive pressure to hold Coastal to a season-low 25.0 percent from the field and force 25 Chanticleer turnovers, which the Osprey’s turned into 29 points.

“North Florida is a much better team than the record shows,” said head coach Alan LeForce.  “Their play on the defensive end of the floor was exceptional.  They forced us into some bad situations; we panicked and turned the ball over.  For some reason, we did not come into this game as confident as we needed to be and that showed on the court tonight.”

The teams exchanged baskets in the early going of the first half with Coastal holding a two point advantage through the first five minutes of play.  However, a seven-plus minute Chanticleer scoring drought coupled with a 14-2 North Florida run sent the teams into the locker room with the Ospreys leading 29-14.  During the run, UNF took advantage of seven Chanticleer turnovers and converted them into nine points.  The halftime deficit was the first for the Chants this season.

The Ospreys used a quick 11-4 run to open the second half to extend their lead to 40-19 with 14:32 to play.  Coastal responded with a 6-2 run of its own as Angelic Henry scored on two mid-range jumpers and Shanika Maddox scored in the paint.  Larkira Jones halted Coastal’s momentum on the ensuing possession with a layup in the paint to bring the score to 42-21.

The Chants would cut the North Florida lead down to 17 several possessions later on a Henry layup, but came no closer as the Osprey’s finished the game on a 23-10 run.

“This was just one of those games where the further the game wore on the worse we seemed to shoot,” said LeForce.  “We couldn’t sustain any rhythm offensively and the players that usually step up in key situations struggled tonight.”

Kira Carter and Shatia Cole finished with a team-high eight points as Maddox led all players with nine caroms.

North Florida was led by Brittany Kirkland’s game-high 14 points on 6-of-17 from the floor and Fabiola Josil’s eight boards.

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