Gregg, Mbandu lead Lady Commodores to 1st round win

By Dustin Kent
PANAMA CITY — In the first two meetings against Florida Southwestern State, Gulf Coast had to stage dramatic comebacks, rallying from 19 and 20 points down en route to narrow regular season victories.

There was no need for any of that for the No. 6 Lady Commodores on Thursday at the FCSAA State Tournament in Niceville, as they knocked off the No. 12 Buccaneers 73-64.

With the win, Gulf Coast advances to Friday’s semifinal round to take on Miami Dade, which defeated Santa Fe 87-82 on Thursday behind a 41-point performance from Daliyah Brown.

The Lady Commodores (22-4) didn’t get a 41 points from anyone Thursday, but D’Asia Gregg’s 26 points off the bench proved pretty crucial, particularly after starting power forward Tatiana Jones picked up two quick fouls in the first quarter and had to sit for the remainder of the first half.

Gregg made 11 of 14 shots from the field and 4 of 5 from the free throw line, while Naomi Mbandu added 20 points, including 13 in the second half, also adding seven rebounds and three assists.

Top scorer Ahlana Smith had a more quiet afternoon, scoring just 12 points on 5 of 15 shooting and dealing with foul trouble of her own.

“We were in kind of a mess with the foul situation, but we survived it,” Gulf Coast coach Roonie Scovel said. “Fatou (Bagate) and (Ra’Shara Simmons) both gave us some great minutes and we squeezed out of that foul trouble.

Simone Lett led the Buccaneers (24-7) with 17 points and eight rebounds, with Za’Nautica Downs adding 16 points on 4 of 15 shooting from the field.


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