Florida women’s basketball player Antoinette Bannister charged with credit card theft and fraud

Antoinette Bannister, a junior guard on the Florida Gators women’s basketball team, was arrested on Friday and charged with theft and fraud after taking a teammate’s credit card and using it at multiple locations throughout Gainesville, Florida.

According to The Gainesville Sun’s Cindy Swirko, the card Bannister stole on Jan. 11 belonged to redshirt junior center Viktorija Dimaite.

Bannister, who used the card at five separate locations and even signed her own name on shopping receipts, admitted to police on Friday that she shopped with the card but noted that she found it outside the Florida Basketball Practice Complex and not inside the women’s locker room of the facility as the police report originally stated.

The Independent Florida Alligator‘s Graham Hall reported early Sunday that Bannister has been kicked off the women’s basketball team. OnlyGators.com confirmed Bannister’s status Sunday evening. Her name remains present on Florida’s roster, however.

Continue Reading » Florida women’s basketball player Antoinette Bannister charged with credit card theft and fraud

Tags: , , , ,

Florida Gators F Christin Mercer charged with conspiracy to commit robbery

Florida Gators sophomore forward Christin Mercer, the women’s basketball team’s most efficient shooter and second-leading scorer at 11.8 points per game, was arrested and released on her own recognizance over the weekend after allegedly taking part in a home invasion and robbery that occurred on May 31, 2013.

According to notarized documents dated Dec. 18, 2013 and obtained Tuesday by OnlyGators.com, Mercer and another co-defendant have been charged with conspiracy to commit robbery, a third-degree felony.

Three of Mercer’s other co-defendants were charged with home invasion robbery with a mask and firearm, a first-degree felony “punishable by imprisonment for a term of years not exceeding life imprisonment,” according to Florida law 812.135.2a.

The documents include an official statement from State Attorney William Cervone and a signature of approval from prosecutor George Wright, affirming that Mercer and one of the four other co-defendants cooperated with investigators and provided information under oath.

The police report, also obtained Tuesday by OnlyGators.com, lists Mercer as an unnamed female who was the alleged getaway driver for the home invasion.

Continue Reading » Florida Gators F Christin Mercer charged with conspiracy to commit robbery

Tags: ,

One night, two late game-winners for Gators

Florida women’s basketball was facing elimination from the 2013 Women’s NIT while Gators softball was about to fall to a heated rival when a late-game swish of the net and an extra-inning crack of the bat turned the fortunes of the respective teams in a pair of nail-biter situations Wednesday evening.

Though Florida women’s basketball did not receive an invitation to the NCAA Tournament, the Gators have been fighting for their lives on the road. After taking down Florida International 75-68 in first-round action last Thursday, UF earned a dominant 85-53 victory over Winthrop on Monday to advance to the WNIT round of 16.

On Wednesday, the Gators (21-14) took on the Charlotte 49ers (26-6) and were engaged in an absolute dogfight. Florida coughed up its lead with less than six minutes to play and found itself in a four-point hole with possession and 1:05 remaining.

Just 13 seconds into the possession, freshman guard January Miller drained a three-pointer with 52 seconds left to cut the Gators’ deficit to one. On the ensuing possession, freshman forward Christin Mercer swiped the ball from Charlotte’s Ny Hammonds and junior G Jaterra Bonds got fouled on a shot attempt.

At the line with a chance to go ahead by a point with 20 seconds remaining, Bonds made the first free throw but missed the second. Suddenly, senior F Jennifer George swooped in for the rebound and head coach Amanda Butler called a 30-second timeout with 15.6 seconds remaining.

Continue Reading » One night, two late game-winners for Gators

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,