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Malta's Sophia Stiles closes out college career as No. 12 Florida Gulf Coast falls to No. 4 Villanova

NCAA FGCU Washington St Basketball
Posted at 7:03 PM, Mar 20, 2023

Malta native Sophia Stiles saw her college basketball career come to a close on Monday evening as No. 12 Florida Gulf Coast fell to No. 4 Villanova 76-57 in the second round of the women's NCAA Tournament.

Stiles finished with two points in 24 minutes of play on Monday. She went 0 for 5 from the field but 2 for 2 from the free throw line. She added two assists, one block and one rebound. Stiles started the game for the Eagles, her second consecutive start after suffering a facial injury in the Atlantic Sun Conference tournament semifinal game that forced her to miss the championship game.

Stiles returned from the injury — a broken cheekbone — to get her first taste of the March Madness tournament, and FGCU opened the national tournament with a win over Washington State on Saturday.

The loss brings Stiles' career to a close after a long journey in college basketball. One of the most decorated high school basketball players to come from Montana, Stiles was a two-time Gatorade Player of the Year at Malta High School and went on to spend five seasons with the Montana Lady Griz, the final three of which were spent as the team's starting point guard. She transferred to FGCU this year and started in every game but one and missed just one game with the injury.

In six years between Montana and Florida Gulf Coast, Stiles totaled 1,202 points in her career, 626 rebounds and 351 assists.