Dolphins' Historic Season Ends in First Round of NCAA Tournament

Dolphins' Historic Season Ends in First Round of NCAA Tournament

COLUMBIA, S.C. – Jacksonville University's historic women's basketball season came to an end Friday in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. The Dolphins capped their first-ever postseason trip in a 77-41 decision against No. 3/2 South Carolina.

Senior captain Briona Brown guided Jacksonville with 17 points, while junior Christin Mercer added nine.

"It's been an amazing journey," said Brown. "I love my teammates. I love my coaching staff. My senior year was one to remember. This was a moment that I'll remember forever, and I have everyone behind me to thank for that." 

Jacksonville forced a turnover on the Gamecocks' opening possession, and went on to score the first points of the game on a trip to the free throw line by Sherranda Reddick. The first five points of the evening were recorded at the charity stripe until a USC layup with 5:27 on the clock.

South Carolina posted a 15-6 advantage at the end of the first quarter before the Dolphins hit a few quick shots to pull within five. Jasmyn and Briona Brown led the charge at the rim to make the score 19-14 at the 8:12-mark. 

The elder Brown swished her second three-pointer for the Dolphins' final shot of the half, and the visitors entered the locker room down, 32-21.

After the break, defensive measures held both sides without a make from the floor for a little over two minutes. South Carolina was the first to strike, recording a jumper with 7:51 on the clock, before embarking on an 11-4 run. Briona Brown capped JU's scoring drought with a trey from the left corner.

The Gamecocks outscored Jacksonville, 22-9, in the third quarter and 23-11 in the fourth.

"Hats off to South Carolina," said Head Coach Yolett McPhee-McCuin. "They were everything we expected them to be. As far as my team is concerned, I can't even put into words how proud I am. To be able to come on this stage and compete, and represent for ourselves, our family, the university and the Atlantic Sun, I wouldn't have it any other way. We'll be back." 

Fin Facts

  • Friday's game marked Jacksonville's first-ever trip to the NCAA Tournament; the Dolphins earned the Atlantic Sun's automatic berth after winning the league title at Florida Gulf Coast
  • The Dolphins entered the NCAA Tournament on an eight-game winning streak
  • Sherranda Reddick recorded Jacksonville's first-ever tourney points on a trip to the free throw line
  • Briona Brown capped her Jacksonville career ranked third in program history in points and rebounds; she has 1,215 and 650, respectively