Official Student Media of Valencia College

Valencia Voice

Official Student Media of Valencia College

Valencia Voice

Official Student Media of Valencia College

Valencia Voice

Knight’s Starters get it done

Coming off a two-game losing streak, the University of Central Florida women’s basketball team pulled off a victory against Tulsa on Thursday night. The home win of 54-48 at the UCF Arena was largely provided by the leadership of three main players — Aisha Patrick, Kayli Keough, and Gevenia Carter.

These three led the Knights by example this season, heading into the game as winners of three-straight over the Golden Hurricanes and hosting Tulsa for the first time in three years.

The trio of starters took control of the game leading their team in points, rebounds, and minutes played.

“We were playing together and having fun, and hard work pays off,” said guard Gevenia Carter. “Boxing out, limiting turnovers, and getting more possessions was key for us tonight.”

Each of the three lady Knights provided for a combined 39 of the 54 points UCF put up, giving their team a great advantage throughout the game.

Kayli Keough had a fast start in the first half, putting up 11 points and four rebounds alone, leading all scores.

“Just able to find spots, and my teammates found me, and I was able to knock them down. We gelled really well as a team, knowing where each other is going to cut,” said Keough.

Adding to the fast start, the Knights owned the first half, only trailing once at the very start of the game. Besides that one lead change, they never gave back the advantage.

UCF gained the momentum early on by managing to get open looks, collecting offensive rebounds for second chance points, and having great energy off the bench.

The bench only contributed a season-low two points overall in duration of the game, but guard Aisha Patrick believed that the spurts of energy was key.

“Our bench brings us energy, it doesn’t always have to be points. It can be from defensive positions, blocks; all of that is energy and that is good for us,” said Patrick, who had a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds. “They’re a big contribution to us.”

Holding down Tulsa to a field goal percentage of 29 percent in the first half, the trio knew they had to play the second like it was a brand new game.

In the second half UCF held Tulsa again to the same field goal percentage, no three-pointers, and fouling them to the free throw line where they struggled to only make six of 11.

Again, the starter Gevenia Carter stepped up with two big three-pointers to widen the gap and basically seal the game as a comeback that was too late for Tulsa.

“My shots weren’t falling in at first, but my teammates just kept encouraging me to keep shooting and they’ll fall, and that’s what I did,” said Carter, who led her team with 14 points.

These three starters again showed why they have continued to work consistently throughout the season to average top rankings in the Conference USA. Coach Joi Williams complimented the performance of her players.

“Our defensive effort was pretty good,” said Williams. “The big thing that stood out was the way we came out with a lot of energy and played aggressively to execute our defensive game plan, so I’m really proud for that.”

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