In 2018-19 as a senior at Provo, guard Lavender Briggs averaged an impressive 32.2 points per game for the Bulldog girls basketball team.

Those numbers were almost certainly unsustainable as Briggs took her talents across the country to compete at the next level in the Southeastern Conference at Florida.

And no, she wasn’t able to pour in that many points for the Gators — but she has led her team as she is averaging 14.8 points per game and 6.3 rebounds per game for Florida.

“It’s definitely been a learning experience,” Briggs said in a phone interview on Tuesday. “The more the season goes on, the more I’m picking up and the more I’m seeing on film. As the months have gone on, the more things have slowed down for me and the more we got better as a team. I feel like we are going to continue to get better.”

She explained that she didn’t feel like the transition from high school to college was all the difficult for her.

“It wasn’t too hard for me because even when I was back at home I really just played basketball and hung out with a couple of friends,” Briggs said. “It’s not really different now. I focus on basketball. I’m either doing something with school or hanging around my teammates, so it wasn’t too hard of a transition for me.”

She was never one to back down from a challenge or be intimidated, so it wasn’t surprising that she was confident when she started as a Gator.

“I feel like I came in with the mindset that I was ready as soon as I stepped on the floor,” Briggs said. “In every game I played in, I felt like I belonged there. I needed to be there to help my team.”

She loves the camaraderie she has found as part of the 2019-20 Florida women’s basketball team, even though there have been ups and downs.

“The best thing is hanging out with my team and all the fun stuff we do,” Briggs said. “We’re really close and we have a really strong bond. Every time I’m with them it’s fun.”

Now the Gators are getting ready to face No. 7-ranked LSU in the first round of the SEC tournament at 6 p.m. Eastern today.

“This is a lot of fun,” Briggs said. “We’ve let a couple of games slip and we’re trying to get over that hump, be as good as we know we can be. Now with these last couple of games or however far we make it we’ll see what all our training was for. We’ll see how we can put it to use.”

But even though she has moved on to big-time college basketball, she said her high school memories are ones she still treasures.

“Playing basketball there was fun for me and I’m always going to remember it as a fond memory,” Briggs said.

Her advice to any high school player getting ready to make the jump to the college level is to play with a high level of intensity.

“Every game you play, every time you step on the court go as hard as you can,” Briggs said. “Never take it for granted.”

Briggs is one of many former Utah Valley stars who have earned the chance to continue their careers after graduating from high school.

Here is a list of where former Utah Valley winter sport athletes are currently competing at the college level:

MEN’S BASKETBALL



BYU Men's basketball vs. San Diego 18

Brigham Young University forward Dalton Nixon (33), forward Kolby Lee (40) and other players celebrate after a timeout was called during a game between the BYU Cougars and the San Diego Toreros held Thursday, Jan. 16, 2020, at the Marriott Center in Provo. Isaac Hale, Daily Herald

BYU (5)

Gavin Baxter, So. F, Timpview

Richard Harward, Jr. C, Orem

T.J. Haws, Sr. G, Lone Peak

Blaze Nield, So. G, Lehi

Dalton Nixon, Sr. F, Orem

Trey Stewart, Fr. G, American Fork (serving LDS mission)

UTAH VALLEY (1)

Bradley Kitchen, Sr. G, Springville

UTAH (2)

Matt Van Komen Fr. C, Pleasant Grove

Eli Ballstaedt, Fr. G, Wasatch

UTAH STATE (1)

Trevin Dorius, Fr. C, Wasatch

SOUTHERN UTAH (1)

Maizen Fausett, So. F, Westlake

DIXIE STATE (2)

Hunter Schofield, Jr. F/C, Spanish Fork

James Nelson, So. G/F, Salem Hills

MARQUETTE (1)

Brendan Bailey, So. F, American Fork

OREGON (1)

Isaac Johnson, 6-11 Fr. C, American Fork (serving LDS mission)

SNOW COLLEGE (5)

Tyler Boyack Fr. G, Maple Mountain

Matt Norman, Fr. G, Timpanogos

Tredyn Christensen, Fr. F, Westlake

Logan Sorenson, Fr. G, Payson

Malachi Mills, Fr. F, Lone Peak

USU-EASTERN (1)

Anthony Condie, So. G/F, Westlake

Tanner Cuff, 6-5 Fr. G, American Fork (serving LDS mission)

Hayden Frandsen, 6-5 Fr. G, American Fork (serving LDS mission)

SALT LAKE COMMUNITY COLLEGE (2)

Asa McCord, So. F, Westlake

Spencer Johnson, Fr. F, American Fork

SOUTHERN VIRGINIA (2)

Aaron Leavitt 6-5 Fr. F, Orem

Ricky Stafford, 6-2 Fr. G, Mountain View

NORTHERN NEW MEXICO STATE (1)

Jared Perez, Fr. G, Provo

SOUTHWESTERN OREGON CC (1)

Ike Richards, 6-5 Fr. F, Orem

SPOKANE CC (1)

Austin White, Fr. G, Westlake

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL



BYU women's basketball vs. San Francisco 8

BYU junior center Sara Hamson shakes hands with fans after the 57-44 Cougar win over San Francisco at the Marriott Center in Provo on Thursday, Jan. 23, 2020.

BYU (3)

Lauren Gustin, So. F, Salem Hills

Sara Hamson, Jr. C, Pleasant Grove

Malli Valgardson Perri, So. F, Pleasant Grove

UTAH STATE (1)

Taylor Franson, So. G/F, American Fork

WEBER STATE (1)

Liz Eaton Graves, Jr. G, Maple Mountain

FLORIDA (1)

Lavender Briggs, Fr. G, Provo

SOUTHERN UTAH (4)

Ashley Larsen, Sr. F, American Fork

Shalyn Fano, Fr. F, Timpview

Madi Eaton, Fr. G, Lone Peak

Hannah Robins, So., Juab

UNIVERSITY OF OHIO (1)

Ella Pope, G/F, Timpview

CONCORDIA-IRVINE (Calif.)

Sarah Christopherson, Fr. F, Lehi

WESTMINSTER (1)

Addie Holmstead, Fr. G, American Fork

SNOW COLLEGE (3)

Rachel Richards, So. G, Lone Peak

Sadie Nixon, Fr. G/F, Pleasant Grove

Coleen Katoa, So. F, American Fork

COLORADO MESA (1)

Savannah Domgaard, Jr. F, Westlake

USU-EASTERN (1)

Rylie Tobiasson, So. C, Spanish Fork

SALT LAKE COMMUNITY COLLEGE (1)

Lia Kaufusi, Fr. G/F, Provo

COLLEGE OF SOUTHERN IDAHO (1)

Sierra Davis, Fr. G, Provo

EASTERN ARIZONA CC (2)

Bayli Heap, Fr. G, Juab

Danja Stafford, Fr. F, Mountain View

WESTERN WYOMING CC (1)

Sami Lewis, Fr. G, Lehi

SOUTHERN VIRGINIA (1)

Kelsey Owens, Fr. G, Maple Mountain

HESSTON COLLEGE (Kansas) (1)

Myley George, Fr. F, Salem Hills

GROSSMONT COLLEGE (Calif.) (1)

Rian Fullmer, Fr. F, Westlake

LARAMIE COUNTY CC (1)

Samantha Hester, Fr. G, Westlake

MT. HOOD CC (1)

Ashley Parry, Fr. G, Westlake

WRESTLING



UVU Wrestling: #22 Utah Valley knocks off #13 Purdue, comeback falls just short vs UVA

Utah Valley junior 174-pounder Kimball Bastian was one of five Wolverines to win both matches on the Saturday at the South Beach Duals in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Here, Bastian takes on Wisconsin's Ryan Christensen on Nov. 18 in Madison.

UTAH VALLEY (11)

Jacob Armstrong, Fr., Salem Hills

Kimball Bastian, Sr., Maple Mountain

Derek Fisher, Fr., Pleasant Grove

Spencer Heywood, So., Wasatch

Cameron Hunsaker, Fr., American Fork

Landon Knutzen, Jr., Maple Mountain

Grant LaMont, Jr., Maple Mountain

Taylor LaMont, Jr., Maple Mountain

Jed Loveless, So., Payson

Corbin Smith, Fr., Wasatch

Koy Wilkinson, Jr., Pleasant Grove

GYMNASTICS



BYU gymnastics vs. Nebraska 04

Brigham Young University’s Abbey Miner competes in the uneven bars event during BYU’s season-opening gymnastics meet against the University of Nebraska held Monday, Jan. 6, 2020, at the Marriott Center in Provo. Isaac Hale, Daily Herald

BYU (6)

Abby Beeston, So., Skyridge

Shannon Evans, Sr., American Fork

Gabrielle Hubbard, So., Maple Mountain

Abbey Miner, Jr., Maple Mountain

Sadie Miner, So., Maple Mountain

Brittney Vitkauskas, So., American Fork

UTAH (2)

Hunter Dula, So., Timpanogos

Kim Tessen, Sr., Mountain View

UTAH STATE (1)

Annie Beck, Jr., Spanish Fork

SOUTHERN UTAH (5)

Autumn Jorgensen, Sr., Timpanogos

Madison McBride, Sr., Mountain View

Megan McBride, Sr., Mountain View

Tiffani Stufflebeam, Fr., American Fork

Stephanie Tervort, So., ALA

If you know of other Utah Valley athletes who are competing in winter college sports who aren’t listed, please let the Daily Herald know by sending an email to jlloyd@heraldextra.com.

Daily Herald sports reporter Jared Lloyd can be reached at 801-344-2555 or jlloyd@heraldextra.com. Twitter:

@JaredrLloyd. Instagram:

@JaredrLloyd.

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