Lady Patriots down Eastern Florida behind Rocha's seven 3-pointers

Lady Patriots down Eastern Florida behind Rocha's seven 3-pointers

OCALA- Marcella Rocha showed why it is dangerous to play zone against the College of Central Florida women's basketball team. Rocha set a single-game school record with seven 3-pointers, as the Patriots downed Eastern Florida State 78-57 on Friday night.

For the game, Rocha made 7-of-11 from beyond the arc and scored a career-high 25 points. She made three shots from long range over the first four minutes of the game and helped CF (9-3) to a season-best 9-of-18 effort from the 3-point range.

"Our kids really moved the ball," said CF coach Tommy Jones, whose team assisted on 23-of-31 made baskets. "That's one thing that I am real proud of.

"We can shoot the ball. This is the first time all year long that someone has played zone against us. We've seen man-to-man all year and I knew that we could do this if someone played zone."

Quira Demery added 14 points and 11 rebounds, while Thais Oliveira contributed 21 points, five assists, four steals and four rebounds for the Lady Patriots.

For the game, CF made 31-of-62 shots and scored 20 points off 18 turnovers by the Titans (6-3).

Rocha added four assists and two steals for CF.

Valerie Hill (six rebounds, four assists) and Brittany Grant (five assists) also had excellent games for the Patriots.

CF's defense keyed a 7-0 run to start the second half, after it held a 41-35 halftime lead.

The Patriots didn't allow a point for the first 5:56 of second-half play, as they were strong out of the gate defensively to start the final 20 minutes. It was the third straight game were CF has allowed less than five points over the first 10 minutes of the second half.

"We did a much better job of guarding their shooters," Jones said. "We were helping inside too much in the first half and we really didn't need to.

"In the second half, we got out on their shooters and they threw the ball away some. That was the big adjustment that we made."

EFS didn't make a field goal for the first 7:11 of the second half and had six straight trips where it turned the ball over.

It was the third straight win over the Titans over the past two seasons for CF. With the win, the Patriots are now 9-0 on the year when they hold a team under 60 points. 

The Lady Patriots head on the road tomorrow to face St. Petersburg at 3 p.m.