Briggs Named SEC Freshman of the Week

 After averaging 20.5 points per game and leading the University of Florida women’s basketball team to wins over Ole Miss and Missouri, freshman guard Lavender Briggs has been tabbed the SEC’s Freshman of the Week, the league office announced Tuesday afternoon. 

The league’s top scoring freshman showed why, leading UF to a 2-0 week with averages of 20.5 points, 7.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists. Briggs began the week by tying her career high with 23 points vs. Ole Miss and tying an SEC best with 11 made free throws. Briggs’ play was crucial down the stretch as she hit the game-winning free throws and notched the game-sealing steal on the ensuing possession to lift Florida to a 74-72 win.

The Utah native followed that up with a team-best 18 points, helping fuel Florida to its first-ever win at Missouri on Sunday. Scoring in double figures for the 20th and 21st times this season, Briggs led the team in scoring and minutes played for the week.

With 344 points, Briggs has already cracked Florida’s top 10 freshmen scoring list and she’ll have a chance to continue to climb the charts as at least five contests remain for the Gators. The SEC’s leader in minutes played has six double-doubles and 13 times has paced the Gators in scoring. 

At 14.3 points per game, Briggs has the highest points per game average by a Gator freshman through their first 24 games played since Merlakia Jones averaged 14.5 through the same segment during the 1991-92 season. Jones, one of the program’s finest players, went on to become the Gators’ all-time leading scorer (2,001). 

Briggs’ recognition marks Florida’s first Freshman of the Week honor since Feb. 14, 2017 and its first conference weekly honor of any kind since Haley Lorenzen was tabbed Player of the Week on Jan. 23, 2018. 

Winners of back-to-back Southeastern Conference tilts, the Gators travel to Alabama Thursday before returning home to host nationally-ranked Arkansas Sunday. At 14-11 (5-7 SEC), the Gators look to finish strong with just four regular season matchups to go and tournament seeding on the line. 

With 14 wins and five SEC victories, UF has already surpassed its win total from each of the last two seasons. The Gators have their most conference wins in four years and with three SEC road wins, Florida has its most in three seasons.

Sunday’s matchup with No. 22 Arkansas is shaping up to be an exciting day as it marks the team’s Senior Sendoff for Zada Williams and Paige Robinson. It will also be the program’s annual Play4Kay cancer awareness game and the final Sundae Sunday. For more information on tickets, click here. 

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