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Miami Fends Off Second Half Push From FGCU
|Florida Gulf Coast||24||26||50|
|Stats at a Glance||FGCU||UM|
|FG Percentage||.408 (20-49)||.321 (18-56)|
|3P FG Percentage||.200 (3-15)||.259 (7-27)|
|FT Percentage||.636 (7-11)||.739 (17-23)|
- 19||Malcolm Grant
- 11||Shane Larkin
- 4||Durand Scott
- 1||Durand Scott
Malcolm Grant - 2
Garrius Adams - 2
- 2||Kenny Kadji
MIAMI, Fla. – Despite holding Miami to 18 points and a 17 percent shooting clip (4-24) in the second half, the FGCU men’s basketball team couldn’t overcome an 18-point halftime deficit in a hard-fought 60-50 loss to the Hurricanes on Tuesday night at the BankUnited Center.
The 18 points given up by the Eagles in the second half equals the best defensive effort over the final 20 minutes by the Green and Blue since joining Division I in 2007-08.
Behind 15 points in the second half by junior Sherwood Brown (Orlando, Fla./Olympia HS) and the stout defensive effort, FGCU out-scored Miami 26-18 in the final frame, but couldn’t avoid falling to 2-3 on the young season. The Eagles’ three losses have come by a combined 12 points, while Miami picked up its fourth straight win to open the season, which have all come home.
After trailing 42-24 at the end of 20 minutes, FGCU quickly cut the Miami lead in half, opening the second frame on a 9-0 run that was capped by a three-pointer from Brown that forced Miami coach Jim Larranaga to call a timeout at the 15:49 mark. Brown’s three cut the Miami lead to 42-33, as the Hurricanes went the first 6:55 without a point by shooting 0-for-10 from the field.
Neither team lit up the scoreboard through the middle-half of the second period, as Miami managed just six points over the first 13 minutes, while FGCU followed its 9-0 opening run with no field goals and just five free throws over a 10-minute span.
Despite the offensive lull, FGCU continued to work on the defensive end and with three-pointers from Brown in consecutive possessions cut the deficit to seven points, 55-48, with 1:26 to play.
Brown added a jumper in the final minute to finish with FGCU’s final 10 points, but the Eagles couldn’t make up any ground as All-ACC guard Malcolm Grant went 5-of-6 from the line over the final 80 seconds to seal the win and halt the FGCU comeback.
Grant, one-part of Miami’s terrific upperclassmen backcourt, finished with a game-high 21 points, but was just 5-of-14 from the field and 4-of-11 from three-point. Junior Durand Scott, an ACC All-Tournament choice in 2011, managed just five points over 35 minutes. The duo combined to shoot 7-of-22 from the floor and 4-of-14 from deep.
Led by his 15 second half points, Brown was FGCU’s only player in double figures with 19, while adding a game-high 11 rebounds for his first career double-double. Redshirt junior Eddie Murray (Fort Myers, Fla./Bishop Verot HS) contributed eight points off the bench, while sophomore Chase Fieler (Parkersburg, W. Va./Parkersburg South HS) and freshman Bernard Thompson (Conyers, Ga./Rockdale County HS) had six rebounds each.
Despite giving up size at nearly all five positions, FGCU won the rebound battle for the fifth consecutive game, holding a slim 37-36 edge on the glass. The Eagles were also able to get into the lane, out-scoring the Hurricanes 26-12 in the paint.
FGCU shot 41 percent (20-49) from the floor, but just 3-of-15 from three-point land. The difference in the game and the result of the 18-point first half deficit was the Green and Blue’s 17 giveaways that led to a 17-4 advantage for the Hurricanes in points off turnovers. In the first half, the Eagles’ 10 turnovers led to 16 Miami points.
The Eagles will get a second shot at an ACC member on Friday, Nov. 25, when it heads north to face Maryland at the Comcast Center. Tip is set for 7:02 p.m. and can be seen live on ESPN3.
The game was televised on Fox Sports South and Fox SportsNet in Southwest Florida … FGCU is 0-3 all-time against Miami … FGCU’s 18 points given up in the second half tied the record set against UNF on Jan. 23, 2009 and against USC Upstate on Feb. 6, 2011 … junior Sherwood Brown’s double-double was the team’s second of the season … Brown’s 19 points equaled a season-high while his 11 rebounds were a career-high … Brown’s 15 second half points equal the season-high turned in by freshman Brett Comer against Ave Maria … freshman Bernard Thompson had his four-game double figure scoring streak snapped … Comer led the team in assists (4) for the fourth time this season.