Florida Gulf Coast (FGCU) is accustomed to hooping in sandy, sunny, seaside environs. As such, maybe it shouldn’t be too surprising that the Eagles finished the Cancun Challenge’s Mayan Tournament 3-0, defeating South Florida, Notre Dame and South Dakota State (SDSU).
To do so, they had to take down a Notre Dame team that, while struggling this season, still carries reputational cachet. FGCU next knocked off then-No. 21 South Florida before the Jacks of SDSU gave the Eagles all they could handle in the tournament’s final tilt.
SDSU used their brand of bully ball to ground FGCU’s fast-paced, 3-point flinging attack. The Jacks patrolled the paint, scoring 44 points inside. The Eagles, in contrast, netted 13 threes. With less than a minute to play, it appeared bully ball would triumph over the 3-ball, as the Jacks led by five points with just over thirty second to play. Yet, because of the power of the three, a 68-63 lead was not secure.
Redshirt senior guard Davion Wingate hit a three for the Eagles. On the next possession, she was fouled on a 3-point attempt. At the line, she coolly drained all three attempts. The Jacks responded by going inside to sophomore forward Myah Selland who took it straight to the hoop to take back the lead, 70-69.
FGCU graduate student transfer Ashli O’Neal flew up the floor, scoring on a streaking layup with six seconds to play. A final three from SDSU fell short. Eagles win, 71-70.
FGCU senior forward Ty Adderly was named tournament MVP, while teammate Keri Jewett-Giles also was named to the Mayan All-Tournament Team. From SDSU, Selland and Paiton Burckhard earned All-Tournament honors. South Florida’s Elena Tsineke and Notre Dame’s Anaya Peoples rounded out the team.
In the Riviera Tournament, Creighton showed class, finishing 2-0 behind a pair of strong performances from senior forward Jaylyn Agnew. Agnew dropped a career-high 34 points as the Blue Jays topped the then-No. 23 West Virginia Mountaineers 82-75. She then worked her way to 15 points in Creighton’s 69-59 win over Temple.
Agnew headlined the Riviera All-Tournament Team. Other honorees were Temple’s Shannen Atkinson, Missouri’s Hayley Frank, West Virginia’s Kysre Gondrezick, New Mexico’s Shaiquel McGruder and North Carolina’s Madinah Muhammad, who also was named the Riviera Tournament MVP.
Due to Muhammad’s on-point shooting and scoring, UNC also left Cancun 2-0. The redshirt senior guard poured in 17 first-half points, and 20 overall, to power the Tar Heels past the Temple Owls 71-58. She followed that up with a 24-point effort, propelling North Carolina to an 82-69 win over Mizzou.
Here are the results of all the Cancun contests: