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NEW PORT RICHEY - Nature Coast Tech is a top notch team that came into Monday night's contest against Gulf undefeated. It was in for a rude awakening.
Once the fast-paced game began, and Gulf took control of the tempo, the Buccaneers easily handled their Class 4A, District 8 rivals, 62-28.
Junior Dominique English orchestrated an offense in which the Bucs (7-0, 5-0 district) had three players score in double digits. Senior shooting guard Santana Lennon carried the offense early with all 12 of her points coming in the first half. Forward Nicole Allison embodied Gulf's hustle and contributed eight rebounds.
Senior center Tiara Cook (16 points, six rebounds, three blocks) dominated the post. Cook also was stellar from the free-throw line, hitting 8 of 8.
"We need to get that from Tiara night in and night out for us to be successful," Gulf coach Mike Quarto said.
English had a double double with 15 points and 11 steals, and the point guard also added seven assists and four rebounds.
Nature Coast Tech (5-1, 4-1) shot well in the first quarter to keep it close. The Sharks knocked down four 3-pointers in the first, led by sophomore shooting guard Cherikhan Waddy with two. Waddy finished with 12 points to lead the team.
The big issue for Nature Coast after the game was the injury to freshman starting center Shareka Maner. She went down in the fourth quarter with an injured wrist and did not return.