In a game that featured 11 lead changes and 12 ties, FGCU (6-15, 3-3) came up just short in the end against UNA (8-11, 3-3). From the opening tip, the game was wire-to-wire. Each team failed to separate from the other by more than 5 points at any point in the contest. Players from each squad stepped up in different ways but, in the end, UNA hit the shots down the stretch that ended up sealing their victory. Below we will take a look at the good and bad from this competitive game and discuss what’s next for the Eagles.
Catto, again, was electric for the Eagles. He led all scorers and set a new career high with 23 points on 8/14 shooting (3/7 from deep). He also added 4 rebounds and 3 assists. Catto seems to be growing and maturing before our eyes. Over the last 5 games, he is averaging 16 points, 4 assists, and 5 rebounds while shooting 57% from the floor and 52% from 3.
The Eagles shot fairly well as a team (47%). They also won the rebounding battle (28-26) and the turnover battle (19-21). Unfortunately, these advantages came up short in the end for a bevy of reasons. Still, there were none of the prolonged spells of ineffectiveness that FGCU has had to battle through in most of its games this year.
Defensively, the Eagles allowed the Lions to shoot 53% from the floor and 50% from beyond the arc. UNA shot significantly fewer times than FGCU but managed to put up more points. This was in part due to the amount of open shots that were allowed.
Fouls / Free Throws
One of the biggest disparities on the stat sheet were the amount of times each team was able to get to the line. FGCU committed 20 team fouls resulting in 25 trips to the free throw line for UNA. The Lions committed just 15 team fouls and the Eagles attempted only 11 foul shots. Furthermore, FGCU converted only 6 of those shots into points (55%) compared to 21 (84%) from UNA. This equates to 10 more opportunities to score for the Lions that the Eagles did not have.
While, FGCU technically won the turnover battle, they still fell back into old ways, committing 19 of them on the night. Furthermore, FGCU fell short in capitalizing on many of the turnovers that they forced. This season long struggle is something the Eagles must fix sooner than later.
Low Post Scoring
In a game where the Eagles held a size advantage, they failed to make an impact offensively in the post. Justus Rainwater, Dakota Rivers, and Brian Thomas all saw action at the 5 spot and combined to score only 3 points. FGCU is definitely a guard-dominated team but 3 points simply won’t get it done.
Tracy Hector had himself a solid game with 10 points, 2 assists, and 2 rebounds on 5/9 shooting. Zach Scott made a couple of blunders offensively but made up for it on defense. He racked up 3 steals and secured 2 rebounds while scoring 8 points on 2/5 from behind the arc. Jalen Warren also continued his efficient play adding 9 points and dishing out 3 assists.
FGCU has a week long break to prepare for a home clash with NJIT (6-12, 3-2). The Eagles have improved in many areas over the course of the season and need to continue this upward trajectory against the Highlanders.