SF State (5-12) snapped its five game losing streak Saturday night by beating the California State University Monterey Bay Otters 57-49.
The Gators stagnant offense came to life in the fourth quarter, where they scored 24 of their 57 points. Tatsiana Dashkevich was a big part of the Gators offensive explosion. She scored a game high 17 points, and hit all three of her 3-point shots.
“So happy (with my performance),” Dashkevich said. “I was not happy with my shots in the last game, and tonight I finally got it. It feels great and wonderful that we accomplished a win.”
The Gators went into the fourth trailing 33-43. They shot 4-for-12 from the field in the third quarter, and weren’t playing their brand of basketball, according to head coach Dennis Cox.
“We were settling for shots early in the shot clock, and we really struggled offensively,” Cox said. “We focused on getting into our attack mode sooner in the shot clock in the fourth, and that got us going. The good news was we defended just enough to stay close.”
The Gators were tenacious on defense throughout the game, and held Monterey Bay scorer Victoria Dorn to 0-for-8 shooting from the field.
“(Dashkevich) did a great job on (Dorn),” Cox said. “We played some zone here and there, but she played her man incredibly all night.”
The game was refreshing according to Cox, who said the fourth quarter of the game was the best basketball his team has played all season. He said the win was huge for the team’s playoff push down the stretch.
“That game tonight, regardless of who we play, is really important for us to get back into the race,” Cox said. “The difference between winning and losing tonight was being tied for last and being tied for seventh in the league. That’s how it’s bunched up right now.”
Cox said the Gators’ rebounding was better in the game, in comparison to earlier in the season, and a large part of that was because of Laura Lawson. Lawson nearly posted a double-double on the night, scoring nine points and snagging 10 rebounds.
“It feels good to finally get out of this slump I’ve been in,” Lawson said. “I think we started getting back to the basics and that really helped.”
The win is a big one for the Gators, who improved their conference record to 3-8. They’ll look to keep their playoff hopes alive next Friday on the road against California State University Dominguez Hills.