JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – After rolling in the ASUN Conference Tournament quarterfinals last Friday, the #2 seed Jacksonville University women's basketball plays host to crosstown rival and #6 seed North Florida in the ASUN semifinals on Wednesday, March 7 at Swisher Gymnasium. Opening tip is set for 7 p.m.
The Dolphins have earned a trip to the ASUN Tournament in each of the last five years under head coach Yolett McPhee-McCuin, and it is second time in the past three years that the Dolphins have been the #2 seed in the tournament.
JU's Last Outing
Milestones seem to be a common occurrence for the Dolphins this season as ASUN Conference Defensive Player of the Year Kayla Gordon became the only player in program history to cross the 1,000-career rebound threshold. Gordon helped the #2 Dolphins roll past #7 Kennesaw State in the ASUN Tournament quarterfinals, 79-52, last Friday evening at Swisher Gym.
The Meridian, Miss. native also becomes the only Dolphin in program history to reach both 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds in her career.
A trio of players posted double figures as Gordon led the way with 19 points and 10 rebounds – her 11th double-double of the season. Senior Naqaiyyah Teague added 12 points and eight rebounds, while junior Shakayla Nevitt chipped in 11 points and five boards.
Kayla Gordon was named ASUN Defensive Player of the Year, while she and Jasmyn Brown earned a spot on the All-ASUN First and Second Teams, respectively, at the league's virtual banquet last Thursday afternoon.
Gordon leads the ASUN with 9.7 rebounds per game and 292 total rebounds, and ranks second in the league shooting 52.3 percent from the floor (138-264). She is also averaging 12.2 points per game, 1.4 steals per game, and 0.8 blocks per game.
Named to the All-ASUN Second Team, Brown ranks in the top five in the league in several categories, including third in free throw percentage (76.6) and fifth in both three-point field goals made (57) and points per game (13.7). The Haines City, Fla. native is also averaging 3.8 rebounds per game, 2.0 assists per game, and 1.4 steals per game.
250 and Counting …
Jacksonville once again made history this season as its 73-53 victory over NJIT on Feb. 19 at Swisher Gym marked the 250th all-time win in the program's 18-year history. To put it into perspective, 91 of those 250 wins have occurred in the five-year tenure that head coach Yolett McPhee-McCuin has led the Dolphins.
Senior captains Brandi Buie and Kayla Gordon etched their names in Dolphin program history after the pair both scored their 1,000th career point Jan. 13 against Lipscomb. Buie and Gordon join just eight other Dolphins to reach the 1K milestone.
The last time Jacksonville welcomed two players to the 1K club in a single season was in the 2015-16 campaign (Briona Brown & Sherranda Reddick).
Brown currently ranks fourth all-time in points and is the older sister of captain Jasmyn Brown. Reddick graduated a year ago, and is the Dolphins' all-time leading scorer.
Senior captain Kayla Gordon has 31 career double-doubles to her credit, and earned her first of the 2017-18 season at Nicholls State with 13 rebounds and 11 points.
2014-15 | 5 DD
2015-16 | 7 DD
2016-17 | 8 DD
2017-18 | 11 DD
1,000 & 1,000
You could say Kayla Gordon is having a great year. On March 2, Gordon became the only Dolphin in program history to reach both 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds in her career. Her 10 rebounds pushed her over the 1,000-career rebound threshold to continue her historic season.
Earlier in the year, Gordon became Jacksonville's all-time leading rebounder as her 14 boards at Lipscomb on Feb. 12 lifted her over former Dolphin Kat Sungy (956) with 961 rebounds.
Ten Non-Conference Wins
After setting the program record for single-season non-conference victories last year, the Dolphins have once again crossed the double-digit win threshold prior to the start of league play. Continuing the trend, four of Jacksonville's victories came against first-time opponents in Iona (Nov. 13), Monmouth (Nov. 24), Webber International (Nov. 25), and Flagler (Dec. 10).
Last season's Dolphins rewrote the program's record books with 11 non-conference victories, and tied the single-season win record – first set in 2007-08 – with an overall record of 23-9.
Scouting the Opposition – North Florida
The Ospreys head into Wednesday's contest with a 13-17 overall record. With a 5-9 record against ASUN opponents during the regular season, North Florida received the #6 seed in the ASUN Tournament.
Scoring Leader | ASUN Newcomer of the Year Keonna Farmer (16.1 PPG) … Tesh Hanson is also averaging double digit points with 11.3 PPG
Rebounding Leader | Farmer (8.6 RPG) … Hanson is second on the team with 6.6 RPG
Series History with the Ospreys
The Dolphins are 20-8 all-time against North Florida, and have been victors in the last 11 meetings between the teams.
In the postseason, Jacksonville is 1-1 against the Ospreys with its last win coming in the 2010-11 season when #5 JU defeated #4 UNF 56-52 in the ASUN Tournament first round.
The winner of the Jacksonville-North Florida matchup will take on the winner of the #1 FGCU-#4 Lipscomb game on Sunday, March 11 at the higher seed. Site and game time are to be determined.