By Mary Harvill, exclusive to West Coast Convo
USF Dons (3-0) vs. Florida Gulf Coast University (4-0)
Date and Time: Tuesday, November 25, 2014 at 5:30 PST
Location: Semi-Final Round of the Gulf Coast Showcase, Germain Arena, Estero, FL
Meet the Teams
Fresh off their opening round win against Hawai’i, the Dons will have an interesting test against Florida Gulf Coast University who made a big splash at the 2013 NCAA tournament advancing from #15 to the Sweet Sixteen. Currently undefeated, USF has not had a major test thus far in the season. They will more than meet the challenge that awaits them. Tim Derksen is playing especially well as is Kruize Pinkins, Mark Tollefson and Matt Glover. Coach Rex Walter may not be as tempted to rotate through his lineup as quickly as in past games in search of the best combination of players. USF will be hungry to make a statement by defeating FGCU. The momentum from their game against Hawai’I will serve them well.
Florida Gold Coast University
Essentially the home team at this tournament, the Eagles, also undefeated like USF, have the tremendous skills of current NCAA career assist leader Brett Comer in addition to his highly ranked ability to steal the basketball from opponents. Armed with three experienced senior guards (Comer, Bernard Thompson and Jamail Jones) together with two sophomore forwards (Eric Moeller and Demetrius Morant) in the lineup, FGCU will be a powerful opponent for USF.
With both teams undefeated and both strong members of their respective conferences (the WCC for USF, the MAAC for FGCU), this game and matchup will likely be on the radar for many keen basketball fans and possibly bracketologists who often refer back to early season tournaments like this at NCAA tournament time. This is, perhaps, one of the more noteworthy games of the entire Gulf Coast Showcase. The winner of this game plays in the championship round, the loser plays for the bronze medal/3rd place honors. Both teams would like to have a shot at the championship round and winning this tournament.