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USF Women’s Basketball Cruises Past Jacksonville University 70-39 in Season Opener

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It’s gonna be a fun season for women’s basketball.

Robert Steeg/The Daily Stampede

Led by a game-high 20 points from junior guard Enna Pehadzic, and a double-double from JUCO transfer post Bethy Mununga, the University of South Florida women’s basketball team trounced the Jacksonville University Dolphins 70-39 inside the Yuengling Center on Tuesday night.

Asked to be a Kobe Bryant-like volume scorer last season due to the myriad of injuries that besieged the team, Pehadzic was finally able to take open shots from three-point range tonight thanks in part to the stellar play inside from Mununga in her USF debut.

Pehadzic finished the night 6-of-12 from the field, but 6-of-9 from behind the arc to help open the floor for the rest of her teammates.

Newcomers Mununga (12 points, 11 rebounds) and Maria Alvarez (11 points, five assists) showed flashes of why head coach Jose Fernandez recruited them in the first place. The duo did contribute to eight of the Bulls’ 18 turnovers on the night, and were a combined 1-for-3 from the free throw line.

“8-for-18 from the free throw line. That’s inexcusable. That’s just not us. The [18] turnovers were another thing that was a concern for us,” Fernandez said. “But, we’ll move on. Look at this stuff and things we need to get better at and improve to get ready for our next game.”

Sophomore center Beatriz Jordao returned to action for the first time since suffering a broken leg just 12 games into last season. She had eight points and two rebounds in 9 minutes of action.

“We were careful with her,” Fernandez said. “She’ll play a lot more Friday night [vs. No. 15 Texas]. She feels good. It’s just getting her back, and the feel [of the game] and conditioning.”

USF will face Texas on Friday at 7 p.m. inside the Yuengling Center.

Notables:

  • Sophomore guard Sydni Harvey is still recovering from off-season surgery and did not play.
  • Elisa Pinzan had 9 points, 7 rebounds, and 5 assists on the night. She also didn’t commit a single turnover.