JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (School Release)- The Mercer women's basketball team will try to equal its best start in Atlantic Sun Conference play since the 2009-10 season when it takes on North Florida on Monday evening at UNF Arena.
Mercer (8-7, 2-2 A-Sun) is just one win away from its best start in A-Sun Conference play since the 2009-10 edition of the Bears also started 3-2.
Mercer is coming off back-to-back road wins for the first time this season and is in search of its first three-game road winning streak since February of 2003.
Scouting the Opposition
UNF (7-9, 3-2 A-Sun) is currently tied for third in the A-Sun Conference after most recently downing Kennesaw State 52-49 on January 12. The Ospreys have been a force at home so far this season, posting an impressive 6-1 record in UNF Arena. UNF was picked to finish third in the A-Sun Conference Preseason Coaches' poll after returning three starters from a team that finished with a 13-17 overall record last season. The Ospreys can attribute their early season success to their stingy team defense that is ranked second in the A-Sun allowing opponents to score just 59.2 points per game. UNF is led offensively by senior Jadhken Kerr who averages 8.2 points per game and 6.2 rebounds per contest.
Last Time Out
The Mercer women's basketball team parlayed a career effort by senior Ry'van Buchanan into an impressive 72-68 come-from-behind win over Jacksonville on Saturday afternoon at Veterans Memorial Arena. Mercer was down by as many as nine points in the second half before rallying late and using a go-ahead jumper by Buchanan with just 40 seconds left in regulation to come away with the win. The victory was Mercer's first road win over Jacksonville since 2006 and matches the 1999-2000 squad for the latest in the season that Mercer has had a .500 winning percentage or better. Buchanan netted 32 points, the most by a Bear this season, on a remarkable 13-of-15 shooting from the field and a 3-of-4 showing from three-point territory. Sophomore Precious Bridges was not far behind tallying 22 points, her fifth 20-plus showing of the campaign, to go along with two assists and two steals.
- Buchanan's 32-point effort against Jacksonville was just one point shy of Stetson's Victoria McGowan's 33-point outing against Kennesaw State on January 2 for the most points scored by an A-Sun Conference player in a single-game this season. Buchanan's 32 points are the most scored by a Bear since then sophomore Briana Williams poured in a Mercer and A-Sun Conference single-game record 54 points against USC Upstate on Feb. 4, 2012.
- Junior Sharnea Boykin handed out a career-high 12 assists in Mercer's win over Jacksonville on Saturday. The Atlanta, Ga. native now leads the A-Sun with 6.2 assists per game and a sparkling 1.9-to-1.0 assist-to-turnover ratio.