Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
We inform. You decide.
Wednesday, May 25, 2022
<p>UF coach Amanda Butler claps during Florida's 53-45 win against LSU on Jan. 17, 2016, in the O'Connell Center.</p>

UF coach Amanda Butler claps during Florida's 53-45 win against LSU on Jan. 17, 2016, in the O'Connell Center.

The Florida Gators women’s basketball team has been through this before.

A weekend road match. A date against an underdog Temple team.

Only this time, they’ll be looking for a different result.

When No. 19 Florida (2-0) heads to Ocala’s Patriot Gym to take on the unranked Temple Owls (2-0) this Saturday, it’ll be looking to avenge last season’s 97-91 loss.

However, it won’t be an easy feat. Powered by an experienced backcourt, the Owls are shaping up to be UF’s stiffest competition to date.

“They’re probably the most complete set of guards that we’ve played against,” coach Amanda Butler said. “It’s gonna be a giant challenge for us.”

Four Temple guards — Alliya Butts, Feyonda Fitzgerald, Tanaya Atkinson and Donnaizha Fountain — started at least 29 games last season. Averaging 13 points per game each, those four players accounted for nearly three-quarters of the team’s total offensive output in 2015-16.

They gashed the Gators for 77 points during last year’s meeting. But while they’ll be aiming to replicate their performance, one Florida guard is looking to make a statement of her own.

During the first two seasons of her UF career, junior Dyandria Anderson appeared in an average of 15.3 minutes per game, serving as an understudy to now-graduated guards Cassie Peoples and Carlie Needles.

Anderson worked to emulate her mentors. She noted aspects of their styles of play — Peoples’ control of the offense, Needles’ leadership — and incorporated them into her game.

“You have to run the team, get back, talking,” she said. “I really tried to take in everything that she (Carlie) does in the game, the little things that people don’t notice.”

And in her new role as one of Florida’s starting guards, those traits are evident.

Enjoy what you're reading? Get content from The Alligator delivered to your inbox

Anderson is currently second in the Southeastern Conference in assists per game, dishing six per contest. She’s also supplemented that number with six steals.

Consequently, her usage has spiked — her 25.5 minutes per game are second among UF guards only to All-SEC selection Eleanna Christinaki.

In what’s shaping up as a battle of the backcourts, Florida’s guards will be tasked with stemming Temple’s offense.

And the team will be looking to do it in trademarked fashion.

“We like to throw the first punch,” senior forward Ronni Williams said. “That’s what we take pride in.

“If we come out and have a great start ... we won’t have too many upsets this year.”

Tip-off is scheduled for 1:00 pm.

Contact Alejandro Lopez at alopez@alligator.org and follow him on Twitter @ajlb95.

UF coach Amanda Butler claps during Florida's 53-45 win against LSU on Jan. 17, 2016, in the O'Connell Center.

Support your local paper
Donate Today
The Independent Florida Alligator has been independent of the university since 1971, your donation today could help #SaveStudentNewsrooms. Please consider giving today.

Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2022 The Independent Florida Alligator and Campus Communications, Inc.